Tuesday, September 27, 2022

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EPA Science Matters: Green infrastructure, African swine fever virus, and more

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September 27, 2022


EPA's Science Matters newsletter delivers the latest from EPA's Office of Research and Development straight to your inbox. Keep scrolling to read about recent news and upcoming events.

Water entering storm drain

EPA researchers are helping communities manage stormwater using green infrastructure. Read about their work below.


EPA Research Updates


Runoff from stormwater continues to be a major cause of water pollution in urban areas. To address this problem, cities are increasingly using green infrastructure — a variety of practices that use soil and vegetation to capture, filter, and reduce stormwater. EPA designed a framework to support the use of green infrastructure by assisting communities in making informed decisions surrounding stormwater planning and management.

Sometimes a research challenge leads to the invention of a cutting edge technology. While onsite at a water treatment plant, EPA engineer David Wahman’s team needed to measure free chlorine from parallel filters. To fill this need, Wahman created and patented the Sample Device for Mobile Water Analysis to support the simultaneous analysis of multiple water samples when using a mobile water analysis device.

African swine fever virus is a deadly pig disease that spreads rapidly and can affect domestic and wild swine. While it has never been detected in the U.S., it is important to find ways to protect our food supplies, the pork industry, and swine around the country in the event of an outbreak. EPA researchers and responders are working with USDA’s Animal Plant Health Inspection Service to develop disease control measures and test approaches to manage infected waste, including mortality management.

Traditional toxicity testing can be time and resource intensive. To fill this gap, EPA researchers are developing and improving tools, databases, and resources to determine chemical safety in a more efficient, data driven way. New versions of the CompTox Chemicals Dashboard and GenRA bring added features and more data to meet the evolving needs of chemical risk assessment.

Enhanced aquifer recharge (EAR) is the practice of using excess surface water to intentionally replenish and supplement existing groundwater supplies for storage and potential reuse. We awarded $2 million in research funding to the University of California, Berkeley to develop a cost-benefit tool to support EAR as a viable, safe, and cost-effective water management strategy. You can apply for EAR research funding now through Nov. 9. Register for a Sept. 29 informational webinar to learn more.


Meet Our Researchers


Katie

Meet EPA Researcher Katie Williams, Ph.D.

Katie is an EPA researcher studying how individuals, organizations, and agencies are engaged in environmental management in the Great Lakes Areas of Concern program. To understand these dynamics, Katie researches policies, learns about how different people use information and knowledge, and maps institutional processes. Learn about Katie's work.


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