Vision and shape

April 3, 2023
Wastewater Digest 64249dd0787be

As I write this, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan announced the Maximum Contaminant Levels and Maximum Contaminant Level Goals for six per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances.

For PFOA and PFOS, the MCL is 4 parts per trillion with an MCLG of zero. While these figures are 1,000 times larger than the health advisory levels announced last June, they are still exceedingly small and low. They also only directly impact drinking water treatment facilities and professionals, however, the impact on wastewater professionals is also likely to be felt.

National Association of Clean Water Agencies Chief Advocacy Officer Nathan Gardner-Andrews said that if the response to the health advisory levels are any indication, the safety of wastewater and effluent discharges will also come into question with the 4 parts per trillion figure being a point of reference for the general public, environmental advocacy groups and others. I cover more of this in the 2023 Regulatory Outlook on page 10, along with details on regulatory concerns related to Superfund and long-term combined sewer overflow control plans.

But this month’s lead feature highlights three important Women in Water who are shaping the future of the industry. Last year, we featured this section on our website and, this year, we wanted to expand our coverage to print. It is my hope that reading their words will provide additional perspective on your thoughts about the industry as a whole, much like we hope occurs when you read our Young Pros and Industry Icon features. Actionable insights to improve your day-to-day business, operations and work are necessary, but we must also recognize the human side of the business.

At the end of the day, it is your community — humans — that you and your peers are protecting with your treatment systems.

About the Author

Bob Crossen

Bob Crossen is the editorial director for the Endeavor Business Media Water Group, which publishes WaterWorld, Wastewater Digest and Stormwater Solutions. Crossen graduated from Illinois State University in Dec. 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts in German and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. He worked for Campbell Publications, a weekly newspaper company in rural Illinois outside St. Louis for four years as a reporter and regional editor. 

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