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Keeping it Local

Excellent resource for case studies, community options and cost assessments. Individual and neighborhood wastewater treatment systems. Rain gardens and green roofs. Water-efficient appliances and landscaping. These are examples of decentralized water technologies in action. These systems can beautify cities and towns, enhance water supply, recover energy and nutrients, provide local reuse opportunities, and improve health and the environment. The Decentralized Water Resources Collaborative (DWRC) conducts research and provides outreach to improve science, technology, economics, and management to help ensure these systems meet critical environmental and public health challenges.


Smart, Clean & Green
21st Century Sustainable Water Infrastructure

WERF and the National Decentralized Water Resources Capacity Development Project held a briefing and discussion in Washington, D.C., on emerging smart, clean and green approaches in water management -- systems that use, treat, store and reuse water efficiently at small scales and that blend designs into restorative hydrologies.
Big pipes transporting water to and wastewater away from our cities are often old and under capacity. Many existing methods of water use and wastewater treatment are wasteful, energy intensive and environmentally disruptive. Ultimately, as climate change exacerbates droughts and storm events, populations grow, and water becomes scarce, these systems may not be sustainable.
Decentralized water technologies and designs are the keys to enhancing the performance of the nation’s aging centralized water, stormwater, and sewer infrastructure. These technologies, including rain gardens and green roofs, water-efficient appliances and landscaping, decentralized wastewater treatment and reuse systems, will beautify our cities and towns, stimulate our local economies, enhance water supply, recover energy and nutrients, and improve our health and environment.
This briefing and discussion brought together decentralized systems experts, federal agency representatives, foundations, and others to inform participants about the potential for decentralized systems to achieve ecosystem, economic, social, and other benefits for the nation. Participants also shared information and discussed the research needed to advance the knowledge and science of these systems. Meeting Materials and Notes Available

sewer imageSustainable Water Forum

Sustainable water systems in the future will use, treat, store, and reuse water efficiently at a small scale and will blend designs into restorative water hydrologies.
Our current water infrastructure is on the path to failure. Big-pipe, centralized infrastructure for water, stormwater, and wastewater services is not sustainable over the long-term. These municipal systems consume too much water, disrupt too many ecosystems, and use too much energy to move water and wastewater around.
Growing populations, increasing land development, and climate change will make these problems much worse.
Decentralized technologies will beautify our cities and towns, stimulate our local economics, and improve our health and environment.
Implementing these ideas will require a major change in the way society approaches water systems.

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Decentralized Wastewater Treatment: Treatment Technologies, System Design, and Management Strategies

Webinars were conducted from November 9 through December 14, 2010.
Recordings and reference materials are available Sponsored by: the Conservation Technology Information Center, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Tetra Tech.
All presentations by Tetra Tech staff.
Moderated by: Angie Williams, Conservation Technology Information Center Hosted by: Indiana Watershed Leadership Program, Purdue University
Overview of Centralized and Decentralized Treatment Issues: Summary of Centralized/Decentralized Treatment Approaches Water and Wastewater Resource Management ConsiderationsTMDLs, Watershed Planning, Antidegradation, and Wastewater Wastewater Capacity Development and Cost Issues Barry Tonning, Presenter
Decentralized Treatment: Processes & Technologies: Wastewater Constituents of Concern Physical, Chemical & Biological Treatment Processes Technology Options & Capabilities for Providing Treatment. Jim Kreissl, Presenter
Focus on Decentralized Wastewater System Design: Wastewater Characterization: Flow, Strength, Other Constituents Septic, Grease Interceptor, and Flow Equalization Tanks Site Evaluation: Soils, Slopes, Groundwater, and Sizing Issues Gravity and Pressurized Soil Dispersal Options for Effluent | Advanced Treatment Options: Customized and Proprietary Units Clustered Collection and Treatment Systems Treatment System Operation and Maintenance Vic D'Amato, Presenter
Management Approaches for Decentralized Systems: Management Program Elements and Implementation Options Entities Involved in Managing Wastewater Systems TWIST: The Wastewater Information System Tool. Khalid Alvi, Presenter, Juli Beth Hinds, Presenter
Integrated Water Resource Management: Current Challenges in Water Resource Management Sustainability & the New Paradigm for Managing Water Resources Case Studies on Integrated Water Resource Management. Vic D'Amato, Presenter

WERF logoDecentralized Systems Performance and Costs Fact Sheets.

Small community leaders and planners have a critical need for information and tools to help make good decisions concerning local wastewater management. Community leaders and planners can use the resources on this page to help evaluate the performance, cost, and other factors of various technologies and decide which are the most appropriate for their particular needs.
The Fact Sheets give basic information on the full range of currently available collection, treatment and dispersal technologies for wastewater management and how they may be used individually or in combination. A spreadsheet tool provides planning level cost estimations of different decentralized wastewater management scenarios commonly used in small communities. Initial capital costs as well as long-term maintenance and energy costs are included. Users can take advantage of the default unit cost values provided based on national data or use better, local information when available.

Jeff Moeller WERF

Jeff Moeller, PE WERF Stormwater and Decentralized Systems Senior Program Director.
WERF seeks to improve the capacity of public and private agencies to respond to the increasing complexities of, and expanding need for, decentralized wastewater and stormwater systems, as part of an integrated water management approach.

WERF will achieve this primarily through support of research and development projects that help communities, engineers, regulators, and others address critical knowledge and information gaps in decentralized systems. Knowledge Area: Decentralized Systems


2008 Water To Waste logo

Water To Waste Section Ten:
The Case For Community Management

Water To Waste Section Eleven:
Small community options, choices and solutions

Water To Waste Section Thirteen:
Information about different types of wastewater systems and case studies.

Water To Waste Section Fourteen: A terrible waste to waste - when there's money to be made and saved by innovation.

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Understanding The Planetary Engines At Work - we are all connected!
The fabulous YouTube version of the NOVA program "Earth From Space"

To provide education which increases public awareness of the link between clean drinking water, safe recreational waters, environmentally sustainable surface and groundwater with watershed based, best management practises related to appropriate wastewater systems, technology, treatment and management.

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