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Water-Related News

EPA releases 5-year review of Recreational Water Quality Criteria

The EPA has released its Five-year Review of the 2012 Recreational Water Quality Criteria (RWQC), as required by the BEACH Act amendments to the Clean Water Act (CWA). The review report describes the state of the science since the release of the 2012 RWQC, related to the protection of human health in water bodies designated for primary contact recreation (e.g., swimming) in these areas:

  • Health studies;
  • Indicators and performance of qPCR methods;
  • Microbial source tracking;
  • RWQC implementation tools; and
  • Criteria adoption by states, territories and authorized tribes.
  • Based on the EPA’s review of the existing criteria and developments in the available science, and consistent with CWA Section 304(a)(9)(B), the EPA has decided not to revise the 2012 Recreational Water Criteria during this review cycle. The Agency believes, however, that further research and analysis as identified in this report will contribute to EPA's future review of the 2012 RWQC. The EPA will work with the environmental public health community as it moves forward with its research efforts. The use of qPCR and ongoing research in methods and indicators continue to strengthen and augment the tools available to support the current criteria.

    Irma report: Devastation – and a huge warning sign

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    The forecasters got Hurricane Irma mostly right. At least compared to the predictions of past storms. That’s one of the conclusions from a National Hurricane Center report on the big storm that hit Florida last September.

    John Cangialosi is the lead author of the center’s report on Irma.

    “We’re not trying to brag here in any sense, but the Irma forecasts we had were really successful. That was very, very low errors that we made for track prediction,” Cangialosi said.

    In the future, they won’t always be so successful, he said — that’s why hurricane forecasters and emergency managers keep telling the public not to focus on the exact forecast track or even the wider cone.

    “Try to look at what might happen in your area and don’t be overly deterministic if I’m in the cone or out of the cone,” he said. “Every storm will be different, so let’s take these one at a time and please don’t compare systems over time like say, ‘Oh I survived Irma, I’ll be OK with the next one.’ They really are very different.”

    Aging water meters, leaks cost Apopka $1.2 million, audit shows

    Many of Apopka’s “smart” water meters apparently can’t read.

    An audit ordered by the Apopka City Council last fall blamed the failing high-tech meters for the city’s inability to account for 750 million gallons of water piped to residential and business customers in 2016. The lost water represents 26.1 percent of drinking water distributed by the city and is enough to fill 1,136 Olympic-size pools. The audit estimated the city lost $1.2 million in revenue in 2016 from meter failures and system leaks.

    “It’s a costly infrastructure problem,” said Joe Kilsheimer, whose four-year term as Apopka mayor ended Tuesday when his successor Bryan Nelson was sworn in.

    The city’s consumptive water-use permit with the St. Johns River Management District says “unaccounted for” water cannot exceed 10 percent. St. Johns spokeswoman Danielle Spears said the agency sampled audits from a handful of Central Florida cities with smart meters — including Casselberry, Ocoee, Sanford and Winter Park — and each showed less than 10 percent water loss.