By Brian Skeens, CH2M HILL Senior Technologist

Brian Skeens, CH2M HILL Senior TechnologistOn Tuesday, February 19, 2:00 PM EST, Mr. Skeens will join Mike Rosh of Bentley Systems to present a Water Utility Infrastructure Management educational webinar to discuss this topic. Register for this free webinar.

In the fall of 2010, the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority began a project to develop a Water System Interconnection, Redundancy, and Reliability Plan for 33 water systems in the 15 county Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District including Atlanta. The project was created by the state legislature to meet several objectives. The first objective was to help these water systems meet their interconnection requirements mandated by their regional water supply plan.  Second was to plan for the potential loss of major water supplies in the area. Third was to help water systems increase their ability to maintain water service in the face of catastrophic events through sufficient interconnection with other water systems.

The District water systems are already required to plan to meet their interconnection reliability targets, which for most systems is 35% of their average day water demand. For this project, additional and more stringent interconnection targets were identified. These targets are 35% and 65% of current and projected water demands. While many systems already have a plan to meet 35% of current demand, the additional scenarios for 65% of current and the 35% and 65% of projected water demand were beyond what most had already evaluated.

To evaluate the interconnection targets for all 33 systems, detailed evaluations were performed. These included defining the deficits for each system under various emergency conditions. In some cases this included loss of raw water supply, treatment plant, or transmission system. Based on the largest deficit identified for each emergency condition, various solutions were evaluated. Hydraulic modeling of interconnections was used as an important tool in this process. Hydraulic models were collected from each water system, and where needed, they were created. In some cases, models were combined and simulated together for more reliable results.

This UIM webinar will discuss the project and its outcomes, in particular the use of Bentley System’s WaterGEMS in the evaluation of the emergency scenarios, and hydraulic modeling used for identification of the solutions.

Mr. Skeens is a civil and environmental engineer, project manager, and senior technologist with the Water Business Group in CH2M HILL’s Atlanta office. He has more than 14 years of experience in water and wastewater. Mr. Skeens is currently the East Regional Technology Leader for Water Distribution services. In this role, he assists in identifying pursuits, assigning resources, preparing proposals, delivering projects, and coordinating with other technologists. He also provides senior technical review of proposals and projects related to water distribution and demand management and water supply technologies. In addition, Mr. Skeens is the go-to person for water conservation, demand management, and water loss control in CH2M HILL. He helps coordinate resources and work on projects not only in his region, but throughout the company.