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American Water Announces Leadership Changes

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

On February 16, 2017, American Water announced the following changes to its leadership:

  • Robert MacLean was named senior vice president of its Eastern Division and president of New Jersey American Water
  • Richard Svindland was named president of California American Water and Hawaii American Water
  • Carmen Tierno was named president of New York American Water
  • Jeffrey McIntyre was named senior vice president of its Mid-Atlantic Division and president of Pennsylvania American Water
  • Brian Bruce was named president of West Virginia American Water
  • William Varley was named senior vice president of American Water’s Midwest Division
  • Kathy Pape was named American Water’s senior vice president of Regulatory Policy and Business Development

Additional details are available in the American Water online press room.

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Diverse collaborative seeks to accelerate lead service line replacement

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

LSROn January 10, the Lead Service Line Replacement Collaborative announced a joint effort to accelerate full removal of the lead pipes providing drinking water to millions of American homes.

Composed of 23 national public health, water utility, environmental, labor, consumer, housing, and state and local governmental organizations, the Collaborative released an online toolkit to help communities voluntarily develop and implement lead service line removal programs. Nationwide, old lead service lines connect an estimated 6.1 million or more homes and businesses to community drinking water mains.

Removing lead service lines provides an opportunity to significantly reduce the risk of exposure to lead in drinking water. Lead impairs children’s normal brain development, contributes to learning and behavioral problems, and lower IQs.

The Collaborative’s toolkit includes a roadmap for getting started, suggested practices to identify and remove lead service lines in a safe, equitable, and cost-effective manner, policies that federal and state leaders could adopt to support local efforts, and links to additional resources that may be helpful when developing local programs. The toolkit is intended to be a living resource, and the Collaborative is seeking communities to pilot and provide feedback on the materials.

While federal efforts and regulations related to lead service line removal are ongoing, the Collaborative is focused on mechanisms to support local action.

The Collaborative:
• Promotes a collaborative, community-based approach, built on contributions from residents, health officers, utilities, environmental and other community leaders, local elected officials, consumers, plumbers, the housing community, and others to help provide the strong foundation needed for successful action.
• Recognizes that fully replacing all lead service lines will take many years to accomplish. For that reason, it is critical for communities to start now.
• Identifies policies that federal and state leaders could adopt to help communities succeed. It does not endorse, or advocate for any of these policies. Its members may do so individually.

Is a joint effort of its members, not a corporation or non-profit organization. In addition to the National Association of Water Companies, current Collaborative members include:
• American Public Health Association
• American Water Works Association
• Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies
• Association of State Drinking Water Administrators
• Blue Green Alliance
• Children’s Environmental Health Network
• Clean Water Action
• Environmental Defense Fund
• Justice and Sustainability Associates
• Learning Disabilities Association of America
• National Center for Healthy Housing
• National Association of County and City Health Officials
• National Association of State Utility Consumer Advocates
• National Conference of State Legislatures
• National Environmental Health Association
• National Rural Water Association
• Natural Resources Defense Council
• RESOLVE
• Rural Community Assistance Partnership
• Trust for America’s Health
• United Parents Against Lead
• Water Research Foundation

For more information, go to www.lslr-collaborative.org.

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Pennsylvania American Water Kicks Off Stream Of Learning Scholarship Program

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Pennsylvania American Water has announced that applications are being accepted for its 2017 Stream of Learning Scholarship Program to provide financial assistance to high school seniors who are planning to pursue careers in the water and wastewater industry. The program is designed to support outstanding students living in Pennsylvania American Water’s service territories who are charting a course of study in specific fields, ranging from engineering to environmental science.

The company will award scholarships of $1,000 each to 10 students who are selected through the program’s application process. Applicants must meet the following criteria:

•    Students must currently live in Pennsylvania American Water service area. (Students can attend college outside of the company’s service territory.)
•    Students must plan to attend a two- or four-year college or technical school, and must plan to study environmental science, engineering, biology or chemistry.
•    Students must be high school seniors. (Current college students are not eligible.)

“In the eight years since we launched the program, we have seen how our Stream of Learning Scholarships have attracted many bright, dedicated students into our industry,” said President Kathy L. Pape of Pennsylvania American Water. “We believe in supporting talented young people who have so much to offer and who share our commitment to environmental stewardship and protecting public health.”

Winners will be selected by a panel of judges and will receive their awards in May. Family members of Pennsylvania American Water employees are not eligible.

This month, the company is sending scholarship brochures and applications to high school guidance counselors throughout its service territory. Applications can also be downloaded from the company’s website at www.pennsylvaniaamwater.com and must be postmarked by March 24, 2017.

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Protecting Our Water Sources Brings a Wealth of Benefits

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Protecting our water sources brings a wealth of benefits
By Andrea Erickson, Managing Director, Water Security, The Nature Conservancy

The journey of our water from source to tap is long, and not one we think much about. For most of us, our water starts high in the mountains, hundreds of miles away. From there, water flows across natural and working lands until a portion is channeled to water pipes that move water to our faucets, to farms and to various types of businesses. Most often we think of those pipes as being our main water infrastructure, but upstream lands play a key role in capturing, storing and moving our water. By conserving these lands, we can better protect our water and generate additional benefits for people and nature.

Today, approximately 40 percent of the land in urban source watersheds of the world’s largest cities show high to moderate levels of degradation. This degradation impacts the present and future quality and reliability of water flows. But by investing in nature, we can reduce these impacts.

A new report released by The Nature Conservancy, Beyond the Source: The environmental, economic and community benefits of source water protection, shows that forest protection, reforestation and the use of cover crops can help four out of five of the 4,000 cities analyzed reduce sediment and nutrient pollution in waterways by a meaningful amount. For one in six cities analyzed in the report, the cost of implementing source water protection activities could be recouped through savings in annual water treatment costs alone. For half of the cities analyzed, these activities could be implemented for about US$2 per person annually.

These nature-based solutions also provide a number of co-benefits, including improving the health and well-being of people, preserving biodiversity, capturing and storing carbon and building more climate-resilient communities. When cities “stack” the value of these co-benefits on top of the savings realized in water treatment costs, they can derive even greater value.

Maximizing the benefits of conservation activities will require collective action. Water funds, which enable downstream water users to jointly invest in upstream land conservation and restoration, are a successful mechanism for securing improved water quality and, in some cases, more reliable flows.

For example, in Nairobi, Kenya, high sediment levels in the Tana River from agricultural run-off and development in the mountains catalyzed the development of Africa’s first water fund. Partners in the Upper Tana-Nairobi Water Fund jointly invest in providing upstream farmers with the training, resources and equipment they need to help keep the river healthy, conserve water and reap the benefits of higher crop yields and more stable farms. The fund also has downstream projected benefits including improved water yields and reduced sediment in the river. An analysis of the water fund structure showed that even by conservative estimates the selected watershed interventions could deliver a two-to-one return on investment on average over a 30-year timeframe. During a recent trip to Kenya, the message from water fund investors and participants was clear: it’s in their best interest to make this work. Taking care of the land will ensure the longevity of the agricultural community and create a more sustainable water future throughout the watershed.

As cities and populations grow, and climate change adds undue pressure on vulnerable freshwater systems, maintaining healthy lands around our water sources will be increasingly vital to the future of our water security. By investing in nature, we also invest in our future.

Download the report at nature.org/beyondthesource or visit www.protectingwater.org to explore the data using an interactive map.

 

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Clarification: NAWC and ALEC

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

It has come to our attention that there is some misinformation posted online that incorrectly claims the National Association of Water Companies (NAWC) is a current member of American Legislative Exchange Council, or as it is better known, ALEC.

NAWC was, in fact, a member of ALEC in 2012 – and only in 2012 – because during that year, the organization was pushing for model private-public partnership (PPP) legislation, an idea we still strongly support. However, NAWC ultimately decided to not renew its membership in 2013, and we have not been a part of the organization since then.

If you have the any further questions about this topic, please direct your inquiries to Marybeth Leongini at Marybeth@nawc.com.

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Aqua America Announces New President of Aqua Virginia

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Aqua America has named John J. Aulbach, II, P.E. president of its Virginia subsidiary. Aqua Virginia provides drinking water and wastewater services to approximately 75,000 people in 38 counties and cities statewide. Aulbach succeeds Shannon Becker, who was recently named president of Aqua North Carolina.

“We’re fortunate to have a leader of John’s caliber join Aqua,” said Aqua America Chief Operating Officer Rick Fox. “John brings a proven track record in water and wastewater operations and management in Virginia and an overarching focus on customer satisfaction. I’m confident that he and our skilled and dedicated employees will continue to improve and strengthen Aqua’s water and wastewater service for our Virginia customers.”

Aulbach brings more than 34 years of water industry experience to his new role at Aqua Virginia. He joins Aqua from the Virginia Department of Health, where he most recently served as director for the Office of Drinking Water. Previously, Aulbach was an environmental engineering consultant for the Office of Environmental Health Services, and he served as a district engineer for the Office of Water Programs for more than 18 years.

The full press release can be viewed online.

 

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NAWC-NJ Announces 2016 Scholarship Winners

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini
Pictured (l to r) : Gary Prettyman, NAWC-NJ Secretary, Carmen Tierno NAWC-NJ Treasurer, Scholarship Recipients Ashley Vitiello and Gabrielle Moskalow, Gail Brady, NAWC-NJ Scholarship Chair and Suzana Duby, NAWC-NJ President

Pictured (l to r) : Gary Prettyman, NAWC-NJ Secretary, Carmen Tierno NAWC-NJ Treasurer, Scholarship Recipients Ashley Vitiello and Gabrielle Moskalow, Gail Brady, NAWC-NJ Scholarship Chair and Suzana Duby, NAWC-NJ President

The New Jersey Chapter of the National Association of Water Companies (NAWC-NJ) recently awarded a $2,500 scholarship to Ashley Vitiello of Saddle Brook, New Jersey, and Gabrielle Moskalow of Sewell, New Jersey.

Ashley Vitiello, who will be attending Montclair State University, will be majoring in the sciences, and will strive for a graduate degree in hydrology.  In her scholarship essay, Vitiello wrote “There is nothing more precious to mankind as clean, fresh water.  It is a tragic fact that for so many people around the world, having access to water is so tenuous and difficult.”  Ashley is a graduate of Saddle Brook High School, where she was in the National Honor Society and Captain of the Cheerleading Squad.

Gabrielle Moskalow, who will be attending Rowan University, will be majoring in Chemical Engineering, with additional courses on Environmental Studies.  In her scholarship essay, Moskalow wrote that her ultimate goal “is to complete research on how to move towards a more sustainable future for humans and ecological systems.”  Moskalow is a graduate of Clearwater Regional High School where she was in the National Honor Society and Captain of the Swim Team.

Vitiello, Moskalow and their families were honored at a dinner sponsored by the NAWC – NJ on July 27.  The Scholarship Committee and several Board Members of the NJ Chapter of NAWC were on hand to make the scholarship presentations.

“The Chapter’s scholarship provides financial assistance to college students pursuing careers in any discipline related to the water industry,” said Gail Brady, NAWC-NJ Scholarship Committee Chairperson.  The recipients must live and attend a college or university in New Jersey.  To obtain a 2017 NAWC-NJ scholarship application, please email Gail Brady, Scholarship Chair at gbradygbconsult@verizon.net

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Aqua America Appoints New Aqua North Carolina President

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Aqua America has announced Shannon Becker will succeed Tom Roberts, who is retiring, as president of Aqua North Carolina effective August 1.

As president of Aqua’s third-largest operating subsidiary, Becker will be responsible for the operations of Aqua North Carolina which has 160 employees, more than 95,000 customer connections, 750 water systems and 62 wastewater treatment facilities spread across 51 counties. Aqua North Carolina is also the largest private water and wastewater utility in the state.

Becker joined Aqua in 2009 as controller of Aqua North Carolina. In early 2012, he was named interim president for Aqua Virginia before assuming his role as president in August that year.

“Shannon’s experience running our Virginia operation for the last four years, coupled with his financial background and the experience he gained on that side of the business as the controller for Aqua North Carolina, gives him a unique and comprehensive understanding that will serve him well as he takes on this new and challenging responsibility,” said Aqua America Chief Operating Officer Rick Fox.

Becker graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting and is a certified public accountant.

Visit AquaAmerica.com for more information.

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Members of the National Association of Water Companies Release Water Quality Reports

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Our member companies annual water quality reports are now available. These reports compare drinking water quality to state and federal standards and are required annually of water providers.

“These reports show private water companies have a stellar record of providing high-quality drinking water, underscoring their commitment to consistently make the necessary investments to improve water infrastructure,” said Michael Deane, executive director of the NAWC.

As a requirement of the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Safe Drinking Water Act, nearly all Americans receive notices about the quality of their water from their respective water utilities. These annual notices, called Consumer Confidence Reports (CCRs), provide important printed and online information about the levels of contaminants in source water, and the quality of the drinking water delivered to the tap after it has been treated.

The recent water quality reports affirm that private water companies are committed to delivering high-quality water to their customers. A recently published study (Konisky, D. and Teodoro, M., 2015, When Governments Regulate Governments) concluded that private water utilities have significantly fewer violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act than the national average.

Private water professionals consistently monitor and test the untreated source water. These same professionals also monitor and test the water that has been treated to ensure the water you drink meets or exceeds federal and state regulatory requirements. Due to recent technological advances contaminants can now be detected down to parts per billion.

Private water companies have been committed to providing safe, clean water and reliable service to homes and businesses for more than 100 years. These water and wastewater service providers reliably support the needs of nearly 73 million people every day. That’s almost one quarter of our nation’s population.

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New Jersey Utilities Association Honors Bob Iacullo

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

The New Jersey Utilities Association (NJUA) has named Robert J. Iacullo as the 28th recipient of the NJUA Distinguished Service Award. The utility industry’s highest honor, Iacullo was selected for his leadership and accomplishments on behalf of New Jersey’s investor-owned utilities. The award was presented during the Association’s 101st Annual Conference at Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City.

“Bob was a dedicated NJUA board member for many years. His commitment and leadership has not gone unnoticed, and we are proud to be able to present him with such an honor,” said Andrew Hendry, president and chief executive officer of NJUA.

A veteran of the utility industry, Iacullo retired in 2016 after 36 years with SUEZ North America where he most recently served as executive vice president, overseeing the support services of environmental compliance, health and safety, operations support, corporate communications, regulatory relations and external affairs for SUEZ North America’s water and wastewater businesses across the nation. In this capacity, he had overall responsibility for supporting the company’s utility and environmental services business lines.

Read the full announcement on the NJUA website.

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