Water Infrastructure Funding Optimism
The U.S. Senate recently passed Senate Bill 914, the Drinking Water & Water Infrastructure Act (DDWIA). The bill passed with overwhelming bi-partisan support; next up, the bill goes to the House of Representatives where other lawmakers and committees have pitched their own water bills. It seems that water infrastructure funding is gaining momentum and there is possibility that it will happen. The bill provides for $35 billion over five years vs. ASCE’s estimate of $1 trillion needed over 25 years to address our overall water infrastructure problems. But it’s a start. Hopefully, by the end of the year, we’ll have a water infrastructure package in place.
DDWIA addresses a plethora of water issues from lead pipes to stormwater. However, no matter what the construction project is in the United States, water work will have to contend with all the usual environmental issues. Will DDWIA cover such huge problems as the frequent — literally annual —drought issues in California? There are many who contend that California’s drought could be taken care of by allowing more retention of stormwater. However, environmentalists have fought for years to protect select species of fish, reptiles, etc.
DDWIA has the support of all the water associations, including National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA), Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA), American Water Works Association (AWWA), Water Environmental (WEF), National Utility Contractors Association (NUCA), American Public Works Association (APWA), etc. One would think with all this lobbyist clout that we’ll finally get money for much needed water projects. Let’s hope!
Women in Trenchless Engineering
Many construction projects these days have project contract clauses that provide for Women Business Enterprise (WBE) and/or Minority Business Enterprise (MBE). Sometimes contractors/engineers get by with just a minimum to satisfy these contract requirements. But women and minorities are gaining and have a much larger foothold in construction; and particularly, trenchless technology. In this issue, we take a look at outstanding women engineers in trenchless.
RELATED: Women in Engineering – Anna Pridmore, P.E., Ph.D.
Our cover story focuses five incredible female trenchless engineers, but they are no means the only ones in our industry. With each passing year, more and more talented, intelligent and creative women engineers are part of the trenchless community and ascending into leadership roles. Take a look at these significant women in this issue: Kim Paggioli, P.E., Hobas Pipe USA; Anna Pridmore, P.E., Ph.D., Structural Technologies; Denise McClanahan, P.E., Granite Inliner; Jennifer Glynn, P.E., Woodard & Curran; and Maureen Carlin, P.E., Ph.D., Innovative Pipeline Crossings Inc.
Look at it from a very personal angle. There are many women who play pivotal roles in our daily lives. Seeing this group and all minorities continue to break down barriers and glass ceilings makes all of us and the trenchless industry better.
Hoping for water funding,
Bernard P. Krzys, Publisher