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The award-winning Maytag Central Water Filtration System incorporates Zenon's ultrafiltration to block out a wide range of particulates and pathogens. Photo: Zenon Environmental Inc.
Water filtration system wins award

The editors of Popular Science magazine have noted the Maytag Central Water Filtration System—including ultrafiltration technology engineered by Zenon Environmental Inc., Oakville, Ontario—as one of this year's top 100 breakthrough technologies. The award, given in the Home Tech category, is featured in the magazine's December 2004 issue. The system's ultrafiltration membranes effectively block out particulates and pathogens—such as bacteria, parasites, and viruses—while allowing: essential minerals to pass through. The process is entirely natural and requires no chemical additives. For more information, visit www.zenon.com.

Complete online infrastructure survey

On March 9, the American Society of Civil Engineers will release the 2005 Report Card for America's Infrastructure, assigning letter grades to different areas of the nation's infrastructure. Members can help by completing a brief online survey about the conditions and needs in their local community. Results from the survey will be used in the development and promotion of the 2005 Report Card. To take the survey and view past report cards, visit www.asce.org.

AWWA conference focuses on membrane technology

The American Water Works Association will host its 2005 Membrane Technology Conference and Exposition March 6-9 in Phoenix.The conference, co-sponsored by the International Water Association and the European Desalination Society, will focus on advances in membrane technologies, such as reverse osmosis, nanofiltration, microfiltration, ultrafiltration, and electrodialysis. Regulatory, operational, and small systems issues also will be addressed, as will desalting and membranes for wastewater treatment.The program includes a keynote address, product exposition, networking, and technical tours. For more information, visit www.awwa.org.

Congress OKs 2005 transportation spending

The 2005 fiscal year Transportation-Treasury Appropriations bill was incorporated into the $388 billion omnibus appropriations bill Congress approved Nov. 20. Provisions include an obligation limitation of $34.4 billion for the federal highway program ($753 million more than last year), $734 million for emergency relief, and $79 million for the Appalachian Highway Program.The measure also provides $7.6 billion for public transportation programs, an increase of $378 million over last year.

Palo Alto looks toward zero-waste plan

The city council of Palo Alto, Calif., has voted to draft a zero waste goal and action plan, which it will vote on next spring. City council member Yoriko Kishimoto said, “As we look ahead to our landfill closing sometime in the next 10 years, we were searching for a comprehensive and visionary policy framework which looks beyond 50% diversion,” referring to California's goal of having its cities divert 50% of their waste from landfills.

District to replace 2800 lead pipes

The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (WASA) will replace 2800 lead service pipes this year to reduce the risk of lead contamination in drinking water. The program is part of a plan to replace all the city's estimated 23,000 lead pipes by 2010 at a cost of $300 million, to be borne by taxpayers. WASA's board of directors ordered the plan after tests uncovered thousands of homes with lead levels above the federal safety limit in drinking water.

Company receives FEMA contracts

Airborne 1, El Segundo, Calif, has entered into two joint ventures that have been awarded five-year contracts with the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency to perform riverine and coastal flood insurance studies in support of the agency's flood hazard mapping and map modernization program for their Region IX. The region serves Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, and various U.S. territories.

New Jersey adopts strong mercury, arsenic standards

New Jersey has adopted the strongest mercury and arsenic standards in the nation. The rules, announced by New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection commissioner Bradley M. Campbell, will reduce mercury emissions from certain facilities by up to 90% by the end of 2007 and will cut in half the acceptable limit of arsenic in drinking water by 2006.

Truck recorders may create unneeded expenses

Responding to a recent Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) proposal, the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA) stated that requiring electronic on-board recorders on trucks that monitor drivers' compliance with hours-of- service requirements will create unnecessary expenses for the waste industry. NSWMA president/CEO Bruce Parker said that “using FMCSA estimates, the private sector could be expected to pay $333 million to retro-fit its fleet of approximately 111,000 trucks, which is a staggering expense for an industry that does not cause hours-of-service problems.”

Company provides study, design for CSO

Black & Veatch, Overland Park, Kan., has been charged to study and engineer a solution to reduce combined sewer overflows (CSOs) and mitigate surface flooding within the Harlem and Baden watersheds. Under contract to the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District, the firm will provide engineering services for a proposed tunnel that will intercept stormwater runoff to relieve overloaded combined sewers and ultimately discharge stormwater directly to the Mississippi River. The project involves more than 100 individual drainage areas that comprise a 9600-acre urban project area.