Access Water Client Newsletter: March 2014

Industry | Hats Off To | Cool Projects | Community | Where to See Us | Latest Access Water Blogs

President’s Message

On January 1, with great pleasure, I took on the role as CH2M HILL’s new Water President. I have been with CH2M HILL for nearly 33 years, and while I’ve held numerous positions within the firm, my roots are in water. I’ve spent nearly a third of my tenure working with the firm’s Water Market. From 2004 to 2010, I served as the global operations director for Water, before moving oversees to work as the as the deputy program director for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. I am delighted to return to Water as president. I am honored to be leading this extraordinary team and working with you, our valued clients.

As I settle into my new role, I’m most excited about working with you and CH2M HILL Water staff to continue delivering exceptional projects throughout the world. In the coming months, I hope to see a lot of you. I plan to visit as many client offices as possible, as well as spend time with you during industry events and conferences. I want to know what’s on your mind and learn how we can better serve you.

For nearly 70 years, our business has been about taking care of clients, delivering great work, doing right by employees and staying true to our Governing Values:

  • Respect: Civil, ethical workplace-delivering sustainable excellence based on the Little Yellow Book philosophy
  • Delivery Excellence: Client-driven quality, delivered safely in the “CH2M HILL Way”
  • Employee Control: Responsible financial management providing long-term company stability and agility to invest/grow where we choose

I’m grateful for this opportunity to work with you. When we achieve success for our clients, the rest seems to unfailingly take care of itself. 2014 will be an exciting and busy year for our team.

I want to close by thanking Bob Bailey, who transitioned to a new position as Facilities and Urban Environments Market President. I wish Bob the best in his new role and thank him for his leadership over the last 6 years as president of CH2M HILL’s Water team.

Best Regards,


Greg McIntyre
President, CH2M HILL Global Water Market

Our Industry

United Nations Celebrates World Water Day

Since 1993, March 22 has been designated as World Water Day by the United Nations. This year’s theme, “Water and Energy,” is significant as it invites us to think about not just about the importance of freshwater but also about the sustainable management of energy. Water and energy are two of the world’s most precious resources, and they are closely intertwined and interdependent.

In honor of World Water Day, CH2M HILL is pleased to share this infographic that illustrates the water-energy nexus and how we are contributing to the solution by identifying ways to address the amounts of energy required to deliver clean water, as well as reduce the water it takes to generate energy. We are working with clients around the globe to tackle some of the biggest water challenges, including the City of Albany, New York, on its Empire Generating Power Plant water reuse project. The 535-megawatt power plant, which includes a natural gas-fired combined cycle power station, uses non-disinfected municipal secondary effluent as its only process water supply, allowing the facility to conserve fresh water consumption by as much as 7 million gallons per day!

Read this blog by Greg McIntyre, CH2M HILL Global Water Market president to learn more about what CH2M HILL is doing to curb our own water and energy usage.

New Tools for Effective Utility Management Now Available

Aging infrastructure, increased water scarcity, and stricter environmental regulations are among just a few of the cited challenges water utilities face today when making important decisions related to investing in infrastructure—like determining when to purchase new assets or invest in the operations and maintenance of existing ones.

Whether or not industry experts have prescribed to asset management as a remedy or solution to address these challenges, asset management practices and tools are helping utilities and other infrastructure intensive organizations make smarter decisions. As part of our continued commitment to advancing industry understanding of asset management and awareness of the benefits of adopting asset management practices, CH2M HILL and Water Online teamed up on an ongoing editorial series to share asset management tips and best practices with utilities. Check out the first article on why asset management matters to the water industry by CH2M HILL senior consultant in asset management and reliability services Nick Pealy, and last month’s article by CH2M HILL’s John Fortin and Jeff Sanford on using risk assessments to drive proactive investment strategies for asset management. Be sure to watch for upcoming monthly Consultant’s Corner features for more information.

CH2M HILL also helped develop a new benchmarking tool as part of a Water Research Foundation-funded project. CH2M HILL worked with a team of utility participants to create a framework, software tool, and guidance document to enable water utilities to conduct a self-assessment to improve utility performance in one or all of the 10 attributes identified in the Effective Utility Management (EUM) Primer, which was created in 2008 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and several industry associations. Since the primer did not offer specific recommendations on how utilities could benchmark their progress and address gaps for the attributes that are critical to their systems, the Water Research Foundation funded the research project, “Performance Benchmarking for Effectively Managed Water Utilities.” The guidance document resulting from the study provides utilities with specific recommendations on how to benchmark their current and target performance for attributes and identifies strategies to address gaps to improve performance and effectiveness of their systems. Access the tool and related documents on WRF’s project website.

The tool is providing significant value to utilities in identifying ways to improve management performance and efficiency. Initial feedback from utilities that tested and used the tool has been positive. The final report will be available in April.

Read this blog from Mike Matichich, Fair Yeager, and Yakir Hasit for more information about the tool shared during the Utility Management Conference last month.

New Global Water Tool Launched for Cement Sector

CH2M HILL is pleased to have played a role in the development of a new Global Water Tool. Integrating global water data for groundwater, surface water, and precipitation, the tool, which was developed as part of the Cement Sustainability Initiative, allows cement companies to assess the risks of operating in water-stressed regions and helps them manage water use more efficiently and sustainably.

In addition, CH2M HILL started working on the upgrade to the original Global Water Tool. The upgraded tool will incorporate the latest datasets and maps, providing users with a new set of up-to-date, robust, comparable, and comprehensive indicators, as well as customizations for specific industries such as power, oil, gas, and cement. The new version, available this spring, will continue to help industries recognize the value of water to the global economy and to their own sustainable business growth.

Download the tools on the Access Water blog.

Hats Off To. . .

Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati Earns Much Deserved Industry Recognition

The Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati (MSD) is leading the charge for organizational effectiveness and for leading cleaner, greener, and smarter strategies to reduce water pollution.

Uptime Magazine recognized Cincinnati’s MSD for having the Best Emerging Maintenance Reliability Program for 2013 based on MSD’s success in delivering tangible cost savings, while reducing downtime, equipment failures, and safety incidents. CH2M HILL and MSD have closely worked together for more than 6 years to develop and implement an asset management program and other best practices. The award was presented to MSD at the 2013 International Maintenance Conference in December.

MSD celebrated another significant industry award as a 2014 US Water Prize winner for its green infrastructure strategy, which is reducing water pollution, beautifying neighborhoods, and driving economic development in Cincinnati.

Congratulations to all of the US Water Prize winners!

CH2M HILL Projects Receive Business Excellence Awards for Environmental Innovation

CH2M HILL has received recognition for several environmentally progressive projects in the annual Business Achievement Awards program by the Environmental Business Journal and Climate Change Business Journal. The 2013 awards were presented in a March 12 reception in San Diego, California, during the Environmental Industry Summit.

CH2M HILL received a Project Merit Award for Climate Risk Management for its role as a joint venture partner with Hazen & Sawyer on the New York City Wastewater Resiliency Plan. The plan is the nation’s most detailed and comprehensive assessment of the risk climate change poses to a wastewater collection and treatment system.

Arizona’s Pima County Agua Nueva project, which helped reduce total nitrogen concentration in the effluent discharged into the Santa Cruz River, received a Project Merit Award for Water/Wastewater. CH2M HILL designed, constructed, and operates the Agua Nueva Reclamation Facility.

CH2M HILL received a Technology Merit Award in Remediation for its work installing and operating eight solar-powered bioreactor systems in five states and Puerto Rico. The systems treated more than 1 million gallons of contaminated groundwater using only solar energy for power.

In addition, CH2M HILL was awarded a Business Model Innovation Award in Greenhouse Gases and Adaptation for establishing Green Path Partners, a strategic partnership with EKO Asset Management, which uses private financing to develop green, resilient infrastructure that is designed and built to adapt to climate change and provide other long-term benefits to communities and the environment.

CH2M HILL’s Russell Ford Awarded Pioneer Award for 2014 Black Engineer of the Year Award

Jada Parker and Dr. Russell Ford accept BEYA Awards

Dr. Russell Ford, CH2M HILL Water Market’s global service leader for drinking water infrastructure, was presented with the Black Engineer of the Year Awards’ (BEYA) Pioneer Award on February 7, during the 28th Annual BEYA STEM Conference in Washington, DC. Ford was recognized with the prestigious award for his 27 years of experience developing, evaluating, and designing treatment processes to remove contaminants from drinking water. Throughout his career, he has contributed to hundreds of drinking water projects, and he is active in professional organizations, such as American Water Works Association and the Water Science and Research Division.

“Russell is a leader among our Water professionals and embraces the meaning of innovation—never backing down from a challenge. His dedication to technology and to the engineering profession, as well as his passion and commitment, are unparalleled,” said Greg McIntyre, CH2M HILL Global Water Market president.

Jada Parker, structural design engineer in the firm’s Transportation Market’s Ports & Maritime team, was also recognized with a BEYA Most Promising Engineer Award.

Singapore’s NEWater Wins “Water for Life” Award

Singapore Public Utility Board’s (PUB) brand of recycled water, NEWater, was recognized by United Nations Water (UN-Water) with the “Water for Life” Best Practices Award 2014. PUB received the award for its public communications and education efforts to share best practices that are helping to ensure the long-term sustainable management of water resources. The award, which is presented annually, was given to PUB Chief Executive Chew Men Leong at a special ceremony held in Tokyo, Japan, to commemorate World Water Day 2014.

Introduced in 2002, NEWater provides approximately 30% of Singapore’s water supply. Through a successful marketing campaign, PUB educated the public that NEWater is safe to drink and addressed common misconceptions about water reclamation. The NEWater Visitor Centre, designed to build critical community understanding and support of water treatment technologies and their benefits, played a significant role in transforming the hearts and minds of Singaporeans. CH2M HILL served as PUB’s consultant on the NEWater Visitor Centre.

Cool Projects

Bahrain Petroleum Company Celebrates Installation of Wastewater Treatment Plant

Special inauguration ceremony held to celebrate installation of BAPCO’s wastewater treatment plant.

The Bahrain Petroleum Company (BAPCO) refinery, located in Sitra, Bahrain, recently completed construction and installation of a US$120-million wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). The facility was designed to align with BAPCO’s environmental strategic plan and is the first global installation of this size in any refinery WWTP.Working closely with BAPCO, CH2M HILL led the front-end engineering design for the process plant, which includes capacity to treat 4,400 gallons of wastewater per minute. The four-stage membrane bioreactor (MBR) process treats water to industrial reuse standards, meeting very stringent nitrogen and phosphorus discharge limits.

BAPCO is the first refinery in the world to install a plant that uses optimized process design based on an MBR system. The project demonstrates how cutting-edge treatment technologies can help industrial clients meet and exceed environmental standards set by the Supreme Council for Environment Affairs.  In addition to incorporating MBR technology, BAPCO includes a two-stage plate intercharger cooling system that uses plant permeate and a lithium bromated chiller to control temperatures for treating wastewater and the green and sustainable re-use of the spent caustic as a nutrient for the biological process.

In December, a special inauguration ceremony was held, and BAPCO and CH2M HILL representatives and staff members were joined by Finance Minister and Minister of Oil and Gas Affairs Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa and BAPCO chairman and acting chief executive Adel Almoayyed to commemorate the project’s completion.

The project made the Global Water Award shortlist as the 2014 Industrial Water Project of the Year Award. The winner will be announced April 7.

Our Community

A Strong Foundation for a Sustainable Future

In 1992, CH2M HILL launched its corporate foundation to honor the firm’s founders—Holly Cornell, Burke Hayes, Jim Howland, and Fred Merryfield—and support their legacy of strengthening communities through engineering excellence and community engagement.

Since its founding, the CH2M HILL Foundation has helped further academic excellence in engineering and technology by investing more than US$2 million in college and university programs. Additionally, the Foundation supports global organizations, such as Engineers Without Borders USA, Water for People, the Engineers Week Foundation, and many others. CH2M HILL is proud to support Engineers Without Borders USA’s annual scholarship program. Congratulations to the 2014 recipients!

CH2M HILL’s Foundation established a grant program to support its employees and their volunteer efforts. In December, the CH2M HILL Foundation awarded the second round of Employee Action Grants for 2013, including more than 160 grants totaling more than US$130,000 to benefit 141 non-for-profit organizations where our employees, located at offices around the world, volunteer.

Whether supporting the Foundation’s strategic pillars of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education or environmental stewardship, or a personal community interest, CH2M HILL water employees make a difference not only on the projects they contribute to daily while in the office but also for organizations where they donate their time, talent, and resources.

Todd Wang, CH2M HILL engineer, volunteers with Bridges to Prosperity, an organization that provides communities with access to essential health care, education, and economic opportunities by building foot bridges over impassable rivers.

“In 2013, I volunteered 600+ hours leading and mentoring university student teams, helping them plan, design, and construct pedestrian bridges for remote communities in the developing world,” said Todd. “The most rewarding experience was working with students to complete two bridges in Nicaragua.”

Learn more about the CH2M HILL Foundation and the volunteer efforts of our employees on the Foundation blog.

Stay Social with CH2M HILL

Connecting with our clients, employees, and partners is important to us, as is water, which is why we continue to post thoughtful and innovative water news on our award-winning Access Water blog and social media channels on Facebook and Twitter. With several industry conferences around the corner, there is no better time to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter (@ch2mhill) and visit Access Water to make sure you are subscribed to the blog so that you can get the latest industry insights and engage with our experts during the conference and throughout the year.

Stay tuned to Access Water Blog for innovation and insight on all things water, all year long.