January 25, 2022
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Today's News
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear Sackett v. EPA, a case brought by two Idaho landowners that asks whether the Environmental Protection Agency's jurisdiction over isolated wetlands under the Clean Water Act should be limited. "Given this significant development, the Biden administration should immediately cease its efforts to issue a new WOTUS definition rule that will greatly broaden the federal government's jurisdiction over privately owned land," said Reps. Sam Graves, R-Mo., and David Rouzer, R-N.C.
Full Story: Oil & Gas Journal (free content) (1/24),  Bloomberg Law (1/24) 
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Trinnex: Your Digital Solutions Partner
As a trusted advisor to public and private infrastructure owners, Trinnex fuses engineering innovation and experience into digital strategies and software solutions - helping clients begin and succeed through their digital journey. Learn more.
Environmental Protection
People who live in the vicinity of Shepherd Field Air National Guard Base in Martinsburg, W.Va., have blood concentrations of perfluorohexane sulfonic acid that are above the national average, according to the CDC. PFHxS is a type of PFAS commonly used in firefighting foam on military bases.
Full Story: The Hill (1/21) 
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The Minnesota Court of Appeals has overturned the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's decision to grant PolyMet Mining a water quality permit for a proposed copper-nickel mine and remanded it to the agency for further review. However, the court rejected other concerns raised by mine opponents, such as a call for stronger standards for treated wastewater that would be discharged from the mine.
Full Story: Minnesota Public Radio (1/24) 
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Infrastructure Watch
Almost 30% of waterways in Pennsylvania were deemed "impaired" in 2020, and the situation has only gotten worse since then, according to the state Department of Environmental Protection's 2022 Integrated Water Quality Report. Restoration efforts have helped improve the status of some waterways, but new ones have joined the impaired list, the report says.
Full Story: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (tiered subscription model) (1/24) 
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Funding and Financing
Louisiana plans to spend more on coastal restoration and hurricane protection projects in fiscal 2023 than it has in any previous year. The $1.28 billion in spending by the state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority would be spread over 76 projects as part of a $50 billion, 50-year coastal Master Plan.
Full Story: The Times-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate (1/21) 
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A budget proposal from Missouri Gov. Mike Parson calls for the establishment of the Hydrology Information Center as the state looks to bolster preparation for floods and drought. The center, which would cost $10.4 million, is part of a plan to move "from a reactive to proactive response," says Connie Patterson, spokesperson for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
Full Story: The Associated Press (1/23),  St. Louis Post-Dispatch (1/23) 
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Research, Innovation & Technology
China plans to use only artificial snow for the Winter Olympics in Beijing next month, and experts are concerned the approach will further strain water supplies in nearby Zhangjiakou, where water is already hard to come by. Experts say producing artificial snow for the Olympics may require up to 71 million cubic feet of water.
Full Story: BNN Bloomberg (Canada) (1/21) 
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When facing difficulties at work, you can control how you respond when your "anchor belief," as author Brenda Bence calls it, is positive rather than negative. Alaina Love shares the story of a client who was struggling with work pressures and needed to shake his negative "inner defeatist" before he could work with his boss on solutions.
Full Story: SmartBrief/Leadership (1/24) 
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Today at WEF
There is still time to register for #UMC22
Register today to hear the latest approaches, practices, processes, techniques, case studies and research in all aspects of utility management.
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