Posted on February 25, 2010 5:02 PM
Water 2050 Update, 2-25-10
About the Water 2050 Updates
Regional water-resource stewardship took a giant leap forward on January 26, 2010, when the Northeastern Illinois Regional Water Supply Planning Group (RWSPG) unanimously approved a plan that aims to avoid imbalances between water demand and regional supplies. Read more in this press release. Water 2050: Northeastern Illinois Regional Water Supply/Demand Plan was developed over the past three years by CMAP staff with input and guidance from the RWSPG, the Illinois State Water Survey, and Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
The next steps we must take as a region to implement water plan recommendations are equally important. A new commitment to water-use conservation and demand management is the cornerstone of the water plan. Among the attributes of any successful conservation program are political leadership, stable funding, education, and outreach. This Water 2050 newsletter is designed to be one such outreach mechanism. We plan to issue this newsletter every other month and will launch the first full-length issue in early April. This will be a means to communicate newsworthy items, share valuable resources, and promote ongoing and diverse efforts around water resources planning and management, both at CMAP and throughout the region.
On March 22, CMAP will host a Water 2050 summit for select technical-service providers, stakeholders, and planners with implementation responsibilities. This event is an effort to promote communication and collaboration as the region begins to shift from planning to implementation.
Let's strive together to become a model region in the 21st century, one with water and the collective wisdom to use it wisely. We look forward to working with you in the year ahead and beyond.
We are interested in your water news! This newsletter will feature local examples of water planning and conservation, so please contact Justine Reisinger (firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-386-8802) with your news and examples.
Progress from CMAP
Model Water Use Conservation Ordinance. As the region's population increases to 12 million over the next 40 years, withdrawals from Lake Michigan, groundwater sources, and inland rivers must be balanced with demand projections to attain sustainability. Recommendations of Water 2050: Northeastern Illinois Regional Water Supply/Demand Plan emphasize the importance of water use conservation at all sectors to maintain the demand at levels that are comparable to supplies. The 2010 CMAP Model Water Use Conservation Ordinance, which will be released at the Water 2050 summit and posted to the web on March 22, will give governmental bodies in the northeastern Illinois region a tool for more sustainable water use.
Green Infrastructure Plan evaluation. Illinois EPA (IEPA) is working with the University of Illinois - Chicago, CMAP, the Center for Neighborhood Technology, and others to evaluate effective best management practices, green infrastructure standards, and institutional and policy frameworks to support the development of a Green Infrastructure Plan for the state. Under Public Act 96-26 of the Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act, the IEPA must assess and evaluate the use of green infrastructure for stormwater management in Illinois. CMAP and the team will provide a report to the IEPA outlining recommendations, and the IEPA will present its findings to the Illinois General Assembly in June 2010.
Progress in the Region
GLRI action plan. An Action Plan was released by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) on February 21, 2010. In February 2009, President Obama proposed $475 million for the Initiative to make restoring the Great Lakes a national priority, and the plan describes how it will be executed from 2010 to 2040. The President and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency administrator Lisa Jackson have committed to the initiative in collaboration with 15 other federal agencies.
McHenry County commits to the water plan. Board Chairman Kenneth Koehler submitted a letter of support on behalf of McHenry County for the recently approved Northeastern Illinois Regional Water Supply/Demand Plan. Mr. Koehler states, "To ensure our competitive advantage does not run down the drain, we need data-driven planning, coordination across municipal borders, reinvestment in infrastructure, improvements in efficiency, and water conservation." McHenry County plans to incorporate recommendations from the region's first comprehensive water supply plan into their own Groundwater Protection Action Plan. This would be among the first efforts taken in the region to implement the plan.
Planning workshop. CMAP will be the site of a workshop focus group, "Developing Agent-Based Models for Urban Planning," on March 5, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Attendees will learn how to use the NetLogo simulation program, and their feedback will be used to design software especially for urban planning. Agent-based models enable integration of land use and water use decisions with their simple representation of hydrological processes. Improvement in water management requires translating the cumulative regional effects of local development decisions, such as location and size of withdrawals and diversions, into meaningful assessments of their cumulative ecological and economic impacts. Space is limited to 16. RSVP to Dr. Moira Zellner (email@example.com or 312-996-2149).
ILMA conference. The Illinois Lake Management Association (ILMA) is hosting its 25th annual conference from March 3 - 5 at the Holiday Inn Select in Naperville. Join lake enthusiasts and experts from across the state to learn, share, and discuss lake watershed management approaches and techniques. For conference call, hotel information, and a registration form, visit www.ilma-lakes.org or call ILMA at 800-338-6976, access code 01. Included in the conference program is the workshop, "How to Write a Fundable 319 Grant." Section 319 (h) grants are funded through IEPA and help implement Illinois' Nonpoint Source (NPS) Management program. The program's goal is to protect the quality of Illinois' waters by controlling NPS pollution.
Illinois Water 2010. Paper and poster abstracts are now being accepted for Illinois Water 2010, a conference being held October 5 -7 in Champaign, Illinois. Water researchers, professionals, and students will have the chance to share their work with the larger Illinois water community at this conference. Abstracts and poster submissions should be based on the conference theme "Quality, Quantity, and Sustainability" and must be submitted by April 25.
Illinois appliance rebates. Guidelines for the Illinois Energy Star Appliance Rebate program, funded with $12.4 million in stimulus funds, have been announced. The program, which provides incentives for individuals to replace older appliances with specific residential Energy Star qualified appliances, water heaters, and HVAC equipment, is being rolled out in two phases. As of January 31, consumers can receive "point of purchase" rebates on certain heating and cooling equipment and water heaters. "Point of purchase" rebates on Energy Star qualified clothes washers, dishwashers, refrigerators, freezers, and room air conditioners will be available during April 16 - 25. For more information, check out this fact sheet or call 877-782-7005.
New plumbing tool. The International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) recently released a Green Plumbing and Mechanical Code Supplement. This document helps standardize both sustainable mechanical systems and residential and commercial plumbing. The green supplement will help bridge the gap between existing codes and established green building programs, according to this press release.
Water in the News
Water plan press. Approval of the water plan received a lot of press coverage throughout the region and beyond. The Chicago Tribune published a general story on the water plan, with additional targeted stories in north, west, and Chicagoland editions. Click here to read all the Trib articles. Visit the CMAP news archive for all the media coverage about the unanimously approved water plan.
Strategies for water conservation: Is the price right? Margaret Schneemann was interviewed in the latest issue of HELM to discuss her work as a water resource economist in partnership between CMAP and the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant. The article focuses on economic analysis to support the Northeastern Illinois Water Supply/Demand Plan.
Invasive Asian carp and the Chicago diversion. Recommendations on Asian carp control efforts have been debated over the past few weeks, which could affect management of the Chicago diversion and the City's wastewater infrastructure. A video was posted from the public meeting held in Chicago on February 12 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to discuss the issue. The February 2010 Asian Carp Control Strategy Framework is now online as well. A second public meeting was hosted by the International Joint Commission on February 17 in Ypsilanti, Michigan.