Saturday , 25 March 2017

July 13, 2016 E-News

MANURE RUNOFF KILLS FISH IN NORTHEAST WISCONSIN – A manure runoff in a northeast Wisconsin killed fish in a nearby creek after employees of Shiloh Dairies spread thousands of gallons of manure on a hay field, then heavy rains washed much of it into the creek. It’s impossible to tell how much manure got into the Plum Creek, which runs into the Fox River in northern Calumet County, but anytime there’s a fish kill, it’s a serious incident, said Ben Uvaas, a state Department of Natural Resources agricultural specialist. “Most of the fish species that are dead, you’re looking at suckers, minnows, shiners, those kind of species,” Uvaas said. “We estimate that the fish kill in the most heavily impacted stretch of this creek is going to be a pretty high percentage of the creek.” Both Calumet and neighboring Kewaunee counties have high concentrations of concentrated animal feeding operations, or CAFOs. Some families in the area can’t drink the water from their wells.

PUBLIC COMMENTS DUE JULY 13, 2016 ON METHODOLOGY FOR ALLOCATING LSL PF FUNDS – The Department of Natural Resources has amended page 10 of the draft State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2017 Safe Drinking Water Loan Program (SDWLP) Intended Use Plan (IUP) to include methodology for allocating Lead Service Line (LSL) Principal Forgiveness (PF) funds should the funding requested in the submitted applications exceed the funds available. This draft methodology is available for comment until July 13, 2016. Submit comments to Robin Schmidt, EL Section Chief, at

PHARMACEUTICALS IN EVERY STREAM?The US Geological Survey (USGS) has found traces of pharmaceuticals in every stream they sampled in the southeastern United States. The results correlated with watershed urbanization, water table depth, soil thickness and factors related to wastewater treatment plants.  Given that the pharmaceutical chemicals related to more than just wastewater treatment plant discharges, the authors believe demonstrates “the importance of non-wastewater treatment plant sources and the need for broad-scale mitigation.”

WISCONSIN AMONG 12 STATES TO SHARE $44 MILLION FOR WETLAND CONSERVATION – Governmental agencies and programs they administer on public land have long been significant to conservation in America. But work on private land — often conducted by property owners — plays an important role in managing and restoring wildlife habitat, too. And arguably many of the most critical projects help protect sensitive natural areas in the midst of developed or “working” landscapes. A U.S. Department of Agriculture program that assists with conservation on private and tribal agricultural lands will provide $44 million over the next three years to partners in 12 states, including Wisconsin. Wisconsin will receive $129,000 of Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership funding, according to the USDA. It will be matched by $129,000 by the in-state partner, the Wisconsin Wetlands Association. Wisconsin has lost more than 50% of its historic wetlands and 75% of the remaining wetlands are on private land, according to the Wisconsin Wetlands Association.

SAND MINE FINDINGS CHALLENGED – A new Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources draft report wrongly concludes that sand mining operations don’t produce fine dust particles and shouldn’t affect human health, an environmental advocacy group contends. The DNR released a potential update to its 2012 sand mining analysis for public comment last week. The analysis tracks the latest scientific and socioeconomic information about sand mining in Wisconsin. The agency uses the analysis to inform policy discussions and decisions. Sand mining has taken off in western Wisconsin since 2008, as fracking, a process to free petroleum and natural gas by cracking rock with injections of water, sand and chemicals, has taken hold. The region has high-quality silica sand that works well in the process; according to the report, 92 sand mines are currently active in the area. The boom has generated fears of air and water pollution.

WATER & AGRICULTURE- LESSONS FROM IOWA – Sponsored by the River Alliance of Wisconsin and hosted by Wisconsin Land and Water, this two-hour session is designed and intended for soil and/or water professionals and elected officials for whom water conservation is important. With the impending phosphorus regulations, and with nitrates and other ag pollutants in groundwater, as backdrop, this session will offer you a deeper understanding of how Iowa and Wisconsin face similar challenges, and what water conservationists need to know about this seemingly intractable problem. It is being held on Thursday, July 21, 2:30 – 4:30 pm at the Mead Hotel in Wisconsin Rapids and attendees get 2 CEC’s. For information, go to

GRANTS AVAILABLE TO HELP COMMUNITIES DEVELOP, MANAGE URBAN FORESTS – Wisconsin cities, towns, villages, counties, tribal governments and nonprofit organizations can now apply for financial help for urban forestry projects from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Urban Forestry Grant program. The grants support new, innovative projects that will develop and maintain urban and community forestry programs, said Suzann DaWalt, DNR urban forestry financing specialist. The application process is open now and the deadline to apply is Oct. 1. “The grant period has been expanded by one month to allow applicants additional time to obtain an authorizing resolution from a governing body,” DaWalt said, adding those resolutions must be submitted by the application deadline for the application to be eligible for ranking. Applications and additional information can be found by searching the DNR website, for keyword: “UF grant.” Projects are to be completed between Jan. 1, 2017 and Dec. 31, 2017. Additional information on urban and community forestry and assistance with urban forestry grants is available through local urban forestry coordinators.

FREE WEBINAR ON VFDS: PRACTICAL USE AND REAL ECONOMICS FOR WATER SYSTEMS – This webinar at 2:00 pm, July 21st will discuss the practical uses and limitations of variable frequency drives or VFDs for water systems. The presentation will cover wells, treatment process control, and system distribution and pressurization. It is based on two years of data collection from an operating water system employing 7 VFDs in diverse applications. The presentation will reveal: how VFD performance in the real world differs from theory; how VFDs can be more or less efficient than alternative drive systems depending on the circumstances; and how cost savings may depend more on the power company rate structure than pumping efficiency. To register, go to

QUOTE – “The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all.” – John F. Kennedy

“This week’s issue of the Rural Water E-News is sponsored by the following WRWA Corporate Gold Members and Businesses:”

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David Lawrence
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(715) 344-7778

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