Wednesday, March 20, 2019
"An investment in Knowledge pays the best Interest."

Ben Franklin's words still ring true today. So we pick out the most appropriate articles in current events and news regarding the Water Industry both nationally and in Kansas to filter the most pertinent information for you.

Weekly News - Mar. 11, 2019

03/11/2019 - Weekly KRWA E-News

Lawrence Commission Moves Forward with Dam and Riverbank Maintenance Project
The Lawrence City Commission last week voted unanimously to approve a $1.24 million contract for a project to repair holes in the Kansas river dam, stabilize the riverbank and design potential recreational components and access points to the river, including connections to the city’s trail system. The proposed site for a Kansas River recreation area is located on the south bank of the river, shown here on Nov. 9, 2018.Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism told the commission that they are interested in helping fund components of the project that would improve boating and fishing access, and that some of the costs could be offset by U.S. Coast Guard and other grants. Mayor Lisa Larsen said that the recreational aspects of the project were not only great for the residents of Lawrence but could also lead to economic development. [source]  


Abilene Contemplates Upgrades to Water Treatment Facility and Wells
Kevin Roob, senior engineer with Olsson and Associates told Abilene’s city commission last week that their water treatment plant has an urgent need of repairs totaling $390,000 and other needed updates of $265,000 over the next two years. Their reverse osmosis type plant was the first of its kind in Kansas and has been in operation since 1998. Water Plant Lead Operator Jay Leusman also told the commissioners that the water from the Smoky Hill River wells has been a challenge. Water Plant Lead Operator Jay Leusman“There is a lot of iron which clogs up well No. 17, specifically. Well 20 we are having some issues with. We have talked to the engineers. We have a plan of action but which one (fix) is the best one? They are both very expensive,” he said. Cost is estimated at $8,000. [source


Campaign Launched to Improve Cheyenne Bottoms
A public campaign to raise $300,000 to match more than $1.2 million in federal grants for improvements at Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area has been launched by Ducks Unlimited. The nonprofit organization, dedicated to the conservation of wetlands and associated upland habitats for waterfowl, other wildlife, and people, has established a goal to raise those funds within two years, said Joe Kramer, special projects manager for Ducks Unlimited. It will be used to match money allocated through the Pittman-Robertson Act, an excise tax collected on firearms and ammunition. “Cheyenne Bottoms is an essential stop-over for millions of birds during their spring and fall migrations,” Matt Hough, Duck Unlimited’s manager of conservation for Kansas stated in a news release. “The shallow wetlands and grass support about 350 bird species. Half of North America’s shorebirds and endangered whooping cranes visit every year.” The Kansas wetland is so vital to the Central Flyway, a migratory bird path that goes north to south through the center of the U.S., that the project will be a national campaign. “Unfortunately, the wetland’s ability to attract birds has declined and will only get worse unless we act,” Hough stated. “The Bottoms is filling up with silt, which plugs water-control structures and other infrastructure needed to keep the wetland in a healthy and manageable condition.” Besides pumps, many of the manually-operated 6-by-6-foot metal gates used to control water levels around the wetland, many installed initially in the 1950s, are rusted in place by the saltwater, or are only partially functioning or are blocked by silt. The inability to control water levels, as well as the growing levels of silt, are contributing to extensive cattail growth and reducing the areas attractive to birds, said Joe Wagner, public lands manager with the KDWPT, who’s managed the Cheyenne Bottoms since 2017. “A lot of infrastructure put in place in the early 90s, particularly our pumps, is starting to need replacing,” Wagner said. “It’s not surprising. They’ve exceeded their useful lifespan. So, we’re looking at upgrading pumps, adding new pump stations and replacing some of our aged infrastructure.” Nearly 600,000 birders, hunters and other nature enthusiasts come to the area from across the county annually, generating nearly $3 million for the Kansas economy. [source


USBOR and USGS Launch New Prize Competition Seeking Ideas to Lower Cost of Continuous Streamflow Monitoring
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Geological Survey are partnering to launch a new prize competition seeking new and innovative ideas to lower the cost of continuous streamflow monitoring compared to current methods. While collecting accurate and reliable streamflow data is critical to water resources planning, management, and research, the cost of installing, operating and maintaining stream gages remains a significant challenge to federal, Tribal, state and local water agencies. The USGS currently operates 217 stream gages in Kansas. For this first stage, Reclamation will award up to five prizes for a total purse of $75,000. Submissions must be submitted online by Apr. 8. [source


National Groundwater Awareness Week Kicks Off Today
GWAW is an annual week-long observance established by the National Ground Water Association to highlight the responsible development, management, and use of groundwater. The event is also a platform to encourage yearly water well testing and well maintenance. This year’s theme "Think" was designed to urge each of us to consider various ways we can protect our most valuable natural resource. Approximately 132 million Americans rely on groundwater for drinking water. It is also used for irrigation, livestock, manufacturing, mining, thermoelectric power, and several additional purposes, making it one of the most widely used and valuable natural resources we have. The NGWA website includes a toolkit with downloadable and shareable materials to spread the word. [source


Colorado Lawmakers Eye Blockchain Technology For Water Rights Management
A bill filed in the Colorado Legislature last week, proposes that the Colorado Water Institute be granted authority to study how blockchain technology can help improve its operations, including water rights database management, the establishment of water “banks” or markets, and general administration. Eyeing a similar use case for tech, IBM last month collaborated with two organizations – the Freshwater Trust and SweetSense – to track California’s Sacramento San Joaquin River Delta in “real-time” and manage groundwater usage with blockchain and IoT. [source


Los Angeles Aims to Recycle All of Its Water By 2035
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti recently announced a new goal for the city to recycle 100 percent of its wastewater by 2035, a plan he says would cost $2 billion. "Los Angeles is confident in its ability to finance this project largely through federal and state funding, and plans to supplement these funds through city cash or bond money," mayor's office officials said in a statement. The biggest piece of the puzzle would involve upgrading the Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant, the largest such facility in the western U.S. The plant is L.A.'s oldest and largest wastewater treatment facility (roughly the size of Disneyland). It processes 260 million gallons of wastewater every day, currently recycling roughly a quarter of that. The city's three smaller wastewater plants — L.A. Glendale, Tillman and Terminal Island — are already at 100 percent recycled water capacity. City officials are confident they can do the same with Hyperion. [source

KRWA Training Calendar
KRWA Conference Logo

Mar. 26, 27 and 28: Wichita
KRWA Annual Conference & Exhibition


Apr. 9-12: Topeka
Cross Connection - Backflow Prevention


Apr. 10: Russell 
Distribution System Operations, LCR and RTCR


Apr. 16: Hays 
Exam Prep for Certification Exams: Water/Wastewater
(Exams Apr. 17 by KDHE)


Apr. 16: Lawrence
Lift Station Operation & Maintenance


Apr. 24: Chanute
Water System Components: From Source to Faucet 


Apr. 24: Pratt
Basic Math & Water Chemistry; Drinking Water Regulations; Design and Construction of Water Wells


Apr. 30: South Hutchinson
Process Control Instrumentation for Chlorine Analysis


Drought Monitor
According to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor, most of the High Plains remains free of dryness and drought, following above normal snowfall. The KSU Agricultural Research Center at Hays recorded a total of 14.7 inches of snow since the start of the year, almost 6.25 inches above average. But while the Kansas drought map remained "all clear" for the second week in a row, dry conditions and drought expanded ever closer as dry conditions continue to deteriorate in the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles. If rain does not materialize soon across the southern High Plains region, USDM indicates that the impacts of dryness and drought could rapidly develop as seasonably warmer weather arrives.
Southern High Plains detail from the U.S. Drought Monitor, released Mar. 7, 2019.

Current U.S. Drought Monitor maps for:
Arkansas River Basin, High Plains Region, North-Central Region, Southern Plains Region and State of Kansas