Municipal Water Leader
  • Flipbook

    Volume 7 Issue 6 June 2020 A Vision for 2020

    Safety and preparation are two sides of the same coin. A water agency always needs to be thinking about the future in order to prevent possible mishaps and to promote strong and sustainable growth. This issue focuses on proactive plans to build infrastructure, seek grants, and pursue strategic mergers, and on safety and training measures that aim to ensure that this development occurs in the most secure way possible.  In our cover interview, we speak with General Manager Andy Fecko of California’s Placer County Water Agency about the infrastructure and relicensing tasks the agency is tackling at the moment and why infrastructure work promises to be an important part of…

  • Interview

    Planning for Tarrant Regional Water District’s Future

    The Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD) has been providing flood control and water supply services to the city of Fort Worth, Texas, for nearly 100 years. In a swiftly growing urban area that is expected to double in size by 2070, planning for the future through water reuse and new storage and conveyance infrastructure is crucial.  In this interview, Jack Stevens, the president of TRWD’s board of directors, tells Municipal Water Leader about his fascinating professional background, how he decided to run for the board, and the ambitious plans that the board has for the district. 

  • Interview

    How Geneva Pipe Will Help Grow Northwest Pipe’s Business

    Northwest Pipe Company is North America’s largest manufacturer of engineered steel water pipe systems. In February 2020, Northwest Pipe announced that it was acquiring Geneva Pipe Company, Inc., a concrete pipe and precast product manufacturer based in Utah. Branching out into concrete pipe and precast products will allow Northwest Pipe to grow its business in new markets and will provide a new source of revenue.  In this interview, Scott Montross, the president and CEO of Northwest Pipe, and Mike Wray, a Northwest Pipe vice president and the general manager of Geneva Pipe and Precast, explain how Northwest Pipe identified Geneva as a potential acquisition and explain how the acquisition stands…

  • Interview

    DWA’s Supervisor Training and Succession Planning Programs

    Desert Water Agency (DWA) has about 23,000 domestic water connections that serve approximately 89,000 people (including seasonal residents) in the vicinity of Palm Springs, California. Like all municipal water agencies, it has numerous specialized and highly qualified staff members with the institutional knowledge that comes from many years of service. This means that succession planning is a must: When it comes time to replace longtime supervisors or other high-level employees, the agency must find an equally highly qualified replacement, preferably from its own ranks.  In this interview, DWA Human Resources (HR) Director Kris Hopping tells Municipal Water Leader about the agency’s supervisor training and succession planning activities, as well as…

  • Interview

    Keeping Metropolitan’s Employees Safe on the Job

    The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a cooperative public agency that provides water to 26 member agencies that serve about 19 million people across a densely populated 5,200‑square-mile service area in Southern California. Its facilities include some of the largest treatment plants in the country, reservoirs, hundreds of miles of large pipeline, and several hydroelectric plants. It also operates the Colorado River Aqueduct, which brings water from Lake Havasu on the California-Arizona border over 240 miles to western Riverside County. Operating and maintaining these immense facilities have inherent hazards associated with them, and to ensure that Metropolitan’s employees stay safe and healthy, the agency has a well-developed operational…

  • Interview

    How EMWD Successfully Pursues Grants and Loans

    Eastern Municipal Water District (EMWD) supplies municipal water, wastewater, and recycled water services to nearly 900,000 residents of Riverside County, California. It frequently engages in major projects that include infrastructure construction and water quality improvement. EMWD is in a growing region that is currently only about 40 percent built out, which means that it is under a continual demand to expand its plants and other infrastructure. In order to do this in a cost-effective manner that does not burden existing rate payers, EMWD has a well-developed grants and loans team that researches and vets around 1,800 funding opportunities a year, determines which ones are appropriate for EMWD’s projects and schedules,…

  • Interview

    Andy Fecko: PCWA’s Plans for Resilience and Rebuilding

    Placer County Water Agency (PCWA), located on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada mountains 30 miles northeast of Sacramento, California, provides water to about 35,000 treated water customers and around 4,500 irrigation customers. The region has a varied history that includes mining and some of the earliest transnational shipments of fresh fruit on the transcontinental railroad. While some of PCWA’s infrastructure dates back to mining days, the agency is aggressively pursuing certification and funding for new storage, delivery, and recreational infrastructure.  In this interview, PCWA General Manager Andy Fecko tells Municipal Water Leader about how PCWA is continuing its operations amid the COVID-19 pandemic and planning to be part…

  • Interview

    Aqwise’s Contributions to MBBR Technology

    Aqwise—Wise Water Technologies Ltd. is a global company, based in Israel, that specializes in moving bed bioreactor (MBBR) technology, a wastewater treatment technology that holds strong advantages over competing technologies in certain applications. In addition to creating its own carriers—small, ingeniously designed plastic cylinders with nooks and crannies that provide large amounts of surface area for bacteria and biomass to attach to during the wastewater treatment process—Aqwise has the expertise to help design and operate plants that use these carriers in the best way possible. The company has offices in Europe, Asia, and the Americas and has delivered projects in 55 countries worldwide.  In this interview, Marc Krieger, Aqwise’s vice…

  • Interview

    Mapal’s Floating Fine Bubble Aeration Technology

    Secondary wastewater treatment requires providing oxygen to bacteria in wastewater so that they remove the dissolved contamination from it. Providing this oxygen to the bacteria is called aeration. In general, there are two types of aeration: mechanical surface aeration, which uses a mechanical impeller to spray water into the air and tends to be inefficient and to suffer from maintenance and health and safety issues, and fine bubble aeration, which involves releasing tiny bubbles from diffusers fixed to the bottom of a reactor. The Israeli company Mapal Green Energy, based in Kibbutz Yagur, has come up with a new take on the latter method. Its floating fine bubble aeration (FFBA)…

  • Interview

    Ayala’s Natural Wastewater Treatment Systems

    Ayala is an Israeli company that builds specialized installations similar to artificial wetlands that can treat wastewater to high standards of purity using nothing more than gravity and natural processes. Using a carefully selected combination of natural elements like aquatic plants, gravel, microorganisms, and special natural additives, these Natural Biological Systems (NBS) can be customized to remove different contaminants from water and to purify it to any standard desired. NBS installations can be integrated into urban park spaces, making them suitable for densely populated areas as well as industrial and agricultural zones.  In this interview, Ayala’s chief executive officer (CEO), Eli Cohen, tells Municipal Water Leader about how the NBS…