environmental compliance

2021 Iowa Recycling and Solid Waste Management Conference

October 4, 2021

The Iowa Recycling and Solid Waste Management Conference planning committee is diligently working on hosting an in-person conference October 4-6, 2021, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cedar Rapids Convention Complex. Naturally, we’ll be attending if at all possible. So get your vaccine and plan to head to Cedar Rapids in October.

Check back; more information to come! We are recycling it here 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 12:00 am

StormCon 2021 – Milwaukee, Wisconsin

September 13, 2021

StormCon and WaterPro Conference to be held as parallel events in 2021. Endeavor and the National Rural Water Association (NRWA) plan to hold their annual conferences, StormCon and the WaterPro Conference, as parallel events on September 13-15, 2021, at The Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Jonathan J. Meronek
QISP-ToR, ENV SP, CPESC, QSP/D
Project Manager, SCS Engineers

StormCon 2021, the industry’s leading conference on advancing the science and practice of stormwater management, will feature these tracks and professionals such as Jonathan Meronek ready to help!  Jonathan is also a member of the StormCon Advisory Board!

Industrial Stormwater Management

This track covers industrial stormwater management and permitting, focusing on publicly and privately owned facilities covered by industrial stormwater permits or EPA’s stormwater multi-sector general permit. Such facilities range from small businesses located in urban areas, such as restaurants and automotive repair shops, to large sites such as manufacturing plants, transportation facilities, landfills and waste transfer stations, and mining operations.

Managing stormwater at industrial and manufacturing facilities
Stormwater management in the mining industry
Concerns for oil and gas facilities
Transportation activities: airports, ports, and fleet maintenance facilities
Managing stormwater on active landfill sites
Selection, installation, and maintenance of stormwater management systems on closed landfill sites
Storage and handling of hazardous waste
Inspecting industrial sites for stormwater compliance
Integrating industrial stormwater operations with municipal permits

 

Flood Modeling & Mitigation

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a model is worth a million. This track will focus on cutting-edge tools and technologies for designing stormwater infrastructure based on hydrology models.

1D, 2D, and 3D modeling
Flood plain simulation
Drainage sizing/design
Flood risk assessment
Regulatory considerations

 

Programs, Permits & Compliance

This track covers the various aspects of complying with municipal stormwater permits and funding, staffing, and managing municipal and state stormwater programs.

Funding opportunities, such as bonds, development impact fees, and enterprise funds
Creating and managing a stormwater utility
Stormwater credit trading
Public-private partnerships
Asset management
Hiring, training, and managing staff
Strategies for meeting NPDES permit requirements
Building public education and outreach programs
Illicit discharge detection and elimination programs
Reporting requirements
Program audits

 

Transportation & Construction Stormwater

Roads, bridges, highways, airports, and ports convey goods and people and stormwater runoff, transporting pollutants in the process. Sessions in this track will address concerns at these locations and active construction sites and offer strategies for addressing challenges.

Stormwater BMPs for transportation/construction sites
Permitting
Compliance
Programs and management
Illicit discharge detection/elimination
Enforcement/inspection

 

BMP Monitoring

This technical track discusses methods for evaluating and comparing the effectiveness of best management practices and topics and trends in stormwater research, such as standardizing testing protocols and standards.

Performance standards and testing protocols
Evaluating BMP performance
Characterizing pollutant loads
Fate and transport of pollutants
Water-quality modeling
Sampling tools and techniques
Bacterial detection and identification techniques
*Please note that descriptions of technologies or proprietary BMPs must be accompanied by supporting performance data. If your presentation deals with one or more BMPs, especially with proprietary systems, your abstract must indicate what supporting data the presentation will include.

 

Green Infrastructure

This track showcases examples of green infrastructure and low impact development (LID), practices that strive to maintain or mimic the predevelopment hydrology by infiltrating, storing, filtering, and evaporating stormwater runoff rather than moving it offsite to a centralized stormwater system.

Infiltration and bioretention practices
Rain gardens
Green roofs
Porous pavement
Maintenance of green infrastructure practices
Rainwater harvesting and stormwater reuse

Find more Details and Registration information here

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 12:00 am

2021 FES | ACEC-FL Annual Conference

August 4, 2021

The Florida Engineering Society (FES) and the American Council of Engineering Companies of Florida (ACEC-FL) promote professional engineers in Florida. FES and ACEC support engineering education, advocate licensure, promote the ethical and competent practice of engineering, and further the public’s knowledge and understanding of the profession’s importance.

These firms create innovative solutions while upholding their responsibility to the public’s health, safety, and wellbeing.

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 8:00 am

SCS Engineers is hiring! Find your rewarding career path here.

July 23, 2021

 

If you thrive in a friendly, collaborative, and client-focused company, SCS Engineers is the place for you. We’re looking for field technicians to work collaboratively on our Field Services teams nationwide. Specific information is posted for each open position. Use our job search to find your desired location. Under general supervision, our technicians operate, monitor, and maintain gas migration control and recovery systems, including gas well monitoring and adjustment, troubleshooting, and system repairs.

Si prospera en una empresa amigable, colaborativa y centrada en el cliente, SCS Engineers es el lugar para usted. Buscamos técnicos de campo para trabajar en colaboración en nuestros equipos de servicios de campo en todo el país. Se publica información específica para cada puesto vacante. Utilice nuestra búsqueda de empleo para encontrar la ubicación deseada. Bajo supervisión general, nuestros técnicos operan, monitorean y mantienen los sistemas de control y recuperación de migración de gas, incluido el monitoreo y ajuste de pozos de gas, resolución de problemas y reparaciones del sistema.

 

Open Positions at SCS Engineers

 

Become one of the engineers, consultants, scientists, and technicians that help private and public entities run cleaner and more efficiently. A very rewarding place to have a career!

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

TCEQ Updates Rules for CCR Management – Compliance Deadline is January 24, 2021

July 22, 2021

 

SCS periodically prepares Technical Bulletins to highlight items of interest to our clients and friends.  We publish these on our website.

Our most recent Bulletin summarizes and updates the TCEQ’S New Rules Implementing Compliance and Registration Requirements for Coal Combustion Residuals (CCR) Management. In addition, this Bulletin covers TCEQ’s development of a program for implementing the Federal rules governing CCR facilities in Texas. While TCEQ’s CCR program needs to be as protective as the federal CCR rules, there are important distinctions in Chapter 352.

CCR facilities are required to submit a detailed application in 2021 to obtain a TCEQ registration by January 24, 2021. 

 

SCS’ Texas-based professionals are experts on TCEQ’s new program for registering coal combustion residue (CCR) sites. We are currently working to support multiple sites needing to meet the application deadline. Our engineers and geologists know how to use site-specific design and related technical documents to complete TCEQ’s detailed application for a registration consistent with TCEQ’s new regulatory program.

For additional information on the updated regulations, deadlines, and compliance requirements, contact:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

SCS Client Webinar – Compliance During the NSPS/EG and NESHAP Transition Period – July 15, 1:30 pm EASTERN

July 15, 2021

THIS LIVE EVENT WAS RECORDED ON JULY 15, 2021

The EPA’s published clarifications, technical revisions, and new rule versions for the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) and New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for MSW landfills may feel like alphabet soup right now.

SCS Engineers’ webinar and open Q/A forum live on July 15, 2021, at 1:30 Eastern is free and could help keep you informed and on track for compliance by September 27, 2021.

Our panelists advise on the essential key information, deadlines, and changes to field operations to address during the transition from the old to the new NESHAP and NSPS rules.

  • Surface emissions monitoring;
  • Wellhead monitoring and corrective action requirements;
  • Delegation of authority to the state, local, or tribal agencies for emission standards;
  • Applicability of the General Provisions under 40 CFR 63, Subpart A to affected landfills;
  • Monitoring data for control devices during startup, shutdown, and malfunctions (SSM);
  • Gas collection and control system installation;
  • Compliance timing and reporting;
  • Open question and answer throughout the webinar.

 

View Compliance During the NSPS/EG and NESHAP Transition Period Now

Posted by Diane Samuels at 1:30 pm

VSB Environmental Law Section Welcomes Mike McLaughlin to the Board of Governors

July 14, 2021

Mike McLaughlin pictured at left, having fun with his colleagues at SCS Engineers.

 

Michael W. (Mike) McLaughlin has been elected to the Virginia State Bar Environmental Law Section Board of Governors. His four-year term began on July 1. Mike began his career with SCS as a summer intern as a rising sophomore at Virginia Tech. After receiving his civil (environmental) engineering degree, he received his J.D. from Washington & Lee University School of law. He has been with SCS ever since, applying his combination of law, science, and engineering expertise to environmental matters. His knowledge helps businesses and communities protect air, water, and land resources while serving the needs of their clients or constituents.

McLaughlin recalls his early career choices: “It was exciting to work on some of the earliest research projects sponsored by the then-new Environmental Protection Agency. I chose W&L Law because it had Professor Andrew (Uncas) McThenia on its faculty. Uncas was a Virginia State Water Control Board member and taught one of the few environmental law classes in the country. When I told him he was the reason I came to W&L, Uncas apologized and said he would not teach environmental law anymore—the field had too much politics involved. That was an early and important lesson for me.

“Not to worry,” says Mike. “Turner Smith of the Hunton & Williams law firm taught the environmental law class; he was one of the country’s most well-known Clean Air Act attorneys. His knowledge of the subject matter and teaching ability inspired several of us to seek careers in the field.”

Redevelopment of closed landfills is an area of special interest for Mike.

Mike is SCS Engineers’ Senior Vice President of Environmental Services. He advises developers, contractors, lenders, and land development professionals on the technical and regulatory requirements for construction on brownfield sites nationwide. Landfill redevelopment is an area of special interest. His combined engineering and legal background provides an unusual perspective on land development where hazardous wastes or other environmental challenges are present.

In addition to his extensive brownfield redevelopment experience in North America, Mike has worked at more than three dozen Superfund National Priorities List sites in 17 states and on scores of regulatory compliance, voluntary cleanup, and remediation projects for commercial, industrial, municipal, and military clients. His work for electric utilities began in 1980 with research on upgrading solid waste management and has evolved to support greenhouse gas mitigation measures and support the transition to renewable energy.

Mike’s new role with the VSB builds on his decades of experience with the American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, where he is completing a two-year term as Budget Officer and a member of the Executive Committee.

Our congratulations and best wishes to Mike and the VSB!

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

Stephens Works to Take GIS to Next Levels for Landfill Data Collection and Analyses

July 12, 2021

Joy Stephens and Mel Russo using a drone to gather and a laptop to collect and see landfill readings.

 

In her first job at SCS Engineers, Joy Stephens worked in a small trailer, consolidating and analyzing data from landfill field techs’ notes, recorded in logbooks they lugged around while navigating the challenging site terrain, then brought to her covered in leachate and mud.

Transcribing can be messy.

She cross-referenced their detailed, handwritten records with a master list posted on a wall, organized, and methodically examined them. Then she turned them into actionable intel for SCS’s engineers and scientists.

“That was definitely easier said than done. It was a lot of work – a lot of hours to make sure that we were ready for the next day. It struck me that there’s got to be a better way. That we could make collecting and using this valuable information easier for the field staff and OM&M (Operations, Monitoring & Maintenance),” she says.

 

GIS Supports Wellfield Operations

From that inspiration came a lot of brainstorming, developing, and tweaking what today is a powerful yet user-friendly GIS system that stores and organizes volumes of geographical information in one place and gives users what they need fast to troubleshoot landfill conditions. The customizable application is now used at hundreds of landfills across the country, mainly to support wellfield operations, though it has other landfill system applications.

Wellfield liquid levels and detail at a glance.

 

Field techs enter information onto digital forms using a mobile app and submit the data, uploading it to the cloud. OM&M teams have it in a streamlined format in a couple of minutes and can visualize what they are looking for on maps from a dashboard.

The technology that Stephens was an integral player in launching continues to evolve, and there’s a story behind that evolution.

“In the beginning, I reached out to this brilliant young lady, Brooke Aumann, from the Tampa office, who does a lot of GIS work. I had some GIS experience myself, but more landfill knowledge. I picked her brain so we could set up a digital replacement for the logbooks that zeroed in on exactly what the field techs and project managers needed to support our clients,” says Stephens, an environmental scientist.

Together, the two women created experimental web maps to plot and visualize basic information such as the location of each monitoring point, points requiring the collection of liquid levels, and the status of maintenance tasks at each well. Then they developed digital survey forms with more detailed information and connected those forms to the maps; this enabled end-users to overlay even more data for a holistic snapshot of what goes on at wellfields.

“We tried different configurations of web maps and symbology to depict best what we wanted to convey. We talked about what we needed to symbolize and how we needed to symbolize it. And we discussed possibilities for future developments. We knew much more was possible in terms of what we could collect, how all of these data are connected, and how we could exploit the software to better tackle more complex tasks,” Stephens says.

 

From maps to interfacing data forms to the next level X-ray vision

“Now we’ve gone a step further. We’re doing 3D well visualizations, which give a kind of Superman X-ray vision subsurface. You are literally looking beneath to the well to get good intel,” Stephens says.

Wellfield visualization allows you to see the subsurface field and well conditions, including pumps.

 

Traversing the World

With undergraduate degrees in Mandarin Chinese and geology and graduate degrees in teaching science and environmental management, Stephens has long loved learning, the environment, and nature.

“When I was young, my parents were missionaries, and I grew up in the most beautiful, pristine, remote areas, like the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu – so unspoiled and lovely.”

It was a sharp contrast to what she would see later when she moved with her young son to China, where she taught math and science. The air quality was poor, and the streets and landscape were inundated with litter.

That experience was the final push that landed the young professional at the foot of a career path she’d considered for some time; environmental sciences. She’d taught it before, but a voice inside her was telling her to pivot and actually start doing the work.

Stephens found her way into a program at a university in Scotland after researching graduate environmental management programs worldwide. At this prestigious learning institution, she first worked with remote sensors and GIS, identifying and addressing “waste crimes,” namely illegal dumping.

 

Seizing the opportunity to apply her expertise

After graduation, the teacher-turned-scientist took her education and experience back to the United States and SCS Engineers. The company was not foreign to her. By the time she applied, she had made as much a project of vetting employers as she had of scoping out universities. Two draws drew her attention:

“There is the ethos; SCS is genuinely committed to the environment. And the other part that was important to me is SCS is very invested in professional growth and training to foster that growth. I believed that I would have opportunities to move up,” Stephens reflects, recalling when she said yes to the first job working with those logbooks that would be the catalyst to what was to come.

When she came on board, she had to gain practical experience in the solid waste industry and learn the ropes in the field, in addition to her prior experience in renewable energy.  In time she had learned her way around landfill gas collection wells, then kept building on that knowledge.

“I asked a ton of questions. Why are we monitoring for this? What constitutes good gas quality? Why is it important to know liquid levels? What is the difference between vacuum and flow? I think asking all these questions, collecting field data myself, and watching what the guys in the field had to do, gave me a good base understanding to help inform how we would capture the right information using GIS. It was a collaborative effort. Brooke worked on many landfill projects and my colleague, Chris Carver, had 16 years of field and project management work. It all came together.”

She later joined the RMC team (Remote Monitoring and Controls), where she received further training in GIS and mastered other skill sets. Today she is a project professional specializing in GIS and drone services.

 

At home with waste management

The hybrid techie-artist in Stephens comes out when she makes an analogy that tells a little of how her wheels turn.

She grew up playing Legos and now, at almost 40 years old, still builds with them at home with her son.

She approaches the job the same way as when she assembles those sets.

“You know the pieces fit to make something, but it takes creativity to figure out just how to build it and make it as visually pleasing and functional as you can, or to get it to function in different ways. I try to configure and piece together for the best possible design,” she says.

Stephens has married that approach with a desire to be a part of both restoring and protecting the environment. She thinks she’s in the right place to act on that intention.

“I feel like work with waste management and SCS is a way to achieve what I think is so important. We are trying to protect, remediate, and leave conditions better than we found them. That is what being a good steward is all about.”

See Joy Stephens at work in her recent educational presentation for landfill owners and operators. Joy demonstrates technologies to reduce the time to collect, process, and show data.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 10:24 am

What landfills need to do to transition to Federal Landfill Air Regulations…

July 7, 2021

The EPA’s published clarifications, technical revisions, and new rule versions for the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) and New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for MSW landfills may feel like alphabet soup right now.

SCS Engineers’ upcoming webinar and open Q/A forum on July 15, 2021, at 1:30 Eastern Time is free and could help keep you informed and on track for compliance by September 27, 2021.


Our panelists will advise on the essential key information, deadlines, and changes to field operations to address during the transition from the old to the new NESHAP and NSPS rules.

• Surface emissions monitoring;
• Wellhead monitoring and corrective action requirements;
• Delegation of authority to the state, local, or tribal agencies for emission standards;
• Applicability of the General Provisions under 40 CFR 63, Subpart A to affected landfills;
• Monitoring data for control devices during startup, shutdown, and malfunctions (SSM);
• Gas collection and control system installation;
• Compliance timing and reporting;
• Open question and answer throughout the webinar.

 

REGISTER for Compliance During the NSPS/EG and NESHAP Transition Period

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

Career Growth: SCSers Write About Managers and YPs Responsibilities in ZWEIG

July 6, 2021

 

Recently published in Zweig is an article by two SCS Engineers professionals discussing career growth. Montgomery Spillane, PG, a project professional, and Dillon Reio, GIT, a senior project professional at the firm, provide their perspectives in this short and inspiring article entitled Accelerating Development.

The co-authors make valuable points, including that career growth is not a linear path, then provide advice for career accelerating growth and responsibilities.

SCS’s CEO, Jim Walsh records Town Halls every two weeks for employees – our executives like to stay in touch. He just happened to finish a segment on SCS’s Mentorship Program for his Town Hall. Both mentor and mentee reflect the same advice in the Zweig article; they point out a few more benefits for both managers and young professionals during the discussion, such as discovering new pathways, networks and staying on goal.

It is gratifying to observe SCS YPs not only embracing our 51+ year culture of client focus, but they’re also growing our pay-it-forward attitude to build even more value into SCS Engineers every day. It’s truly wonderful to work with so many gifted people.

 

Thanks for creating an environment where the work experience is as rewarding as the results of our work.

 

Read Accelerating Development

Our SCS Co-Authors:

Montgomery Spillane, PG, a project professional

 

Dillon Reio, GIT, a senior project professional

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am