July WaterWorks News: Rate hikes spur opposition, water main causes cave-in, stimulus funds arriving slowly

July 2010 Vol. 65 No. 7
A scene in Gainesville after a water main burst flooded a street and caused a cave-in.

In more WEF news, the federation is initiating a search for a new executive director to lead the 81-year old non-profit technical and educational water quality organization.

Bill Bertera, WEF's executive director for the past 10 years, has announced that he will be leaving the organization effective Dec. 31, 2010. The new director is expected to take office in early 2011.

The new executive director, in partnership with the WEF board of trustees, will be responsible for leading the organization to realize its strategic vision, serve its membership, and successfully lead the business operations.

The new executive director will oversee a staff of nearly 100 and will be based in the organization's Alexandria, VA, headquarters.

ISCO supplies pipe for Eastern Navajo Water Pipeline Project
ISCO Industries, a Louisville, KY-based distributor and fabricator of piping products, supplied 13 miles of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe for phase two of the Eastern Navajo Water Pipeline Project.

The complete pipeline project, which consists of four planned phases, will provide a sustainable water supply to 10,000 people across four counties and eight Navajo chapters. Of the 10,000, nearly 4,000 people currently do not have running water in their homes. These families haul water to their homes in trucks or by horseback. In addition, many of the water sources used by these water haulers are not fit for human consumption due to bacterial contamination.

The 13-mile phase two of the Eastern Navajo Water Pipeline Project runs from Nageezi, NM to Counselor, NM. HDPE pipe was chosen for the phase because of the aggressive conditions of the soil.

“We chose to use HDPE in the phase two design because there was a concern regarding the potential corrosive nature of the soil in the area that precluded us from using ductile iron pipe,” said Andrew Robertson, P.E., senior engineer at Souder, Miller and Associates, the engineering firm for phases two, three and four of the pipeline project.

Funding for phase two of the pipeline comes from the United States Department of Agriculture, the State of New Mexico and contributions from individual Navajo Chapters.

To show support for water conservation and the Navajo Nation, ISCO Industries also presented a $1,000 donation toward the Rio Puerco Alliance summer high school youth program. In the summer, high school students in the water restoration program learn about, and work on, restoration projects that use water-harvesting techniques using locally available and environmentally sustainable materials.