Monitoring data is powerful information, but providing that monitoring data at the touch of a button can give both field crews and managers the ability to proactively react to situations and have profound impacts on the future of the data. For example, energy companies used send staff out to stop by each residential customer’s meter to collect usage information, but now residential electrical meters transmit data wirelessly over an advanced metering network. It is a much cheaper and easier way to gather all of that data and it could be time to start thinking about our MS4 drainage system as a utility that needs monitoring.
Pursuant to the federal Clean Water Act (CWA), NPDES Storm Water Programs require permittees to effectively prohibit non-storm water discharges through their MS4 and implement controls to reduce the discharge of pollutants to the maximum extent practicable. Traditional approaches of dry weather source investigations require labor intensive field inspections that can have limited success observing transient flows. Currently, municipalities use staff members to inspect priority outfalls on a scheduled basis. However, most dry weather discharges are transient in nature and often do not coincide with scheduled site visits. Installing an array of low cost web-enabled flowmeters throughout a drainage area starts looking like a residential area of electrical meters. Data throughout the area is continually being collected and uploaded to the web, providing the data necessary to systematically prioritize drainage areas and focus on the highest priority areas to eliminate significant dry weather flows.
Alta’s web enabled and client accessible MS4 Flow System uses near real-time flow monitoring data, accessed through Alta’s web portal, to assist municipalities prevent dry weather runoff from entering their MS4 systems. This system is a cost effective solution for assessing the MS4 network, open channels, jurisdictional boundaries, and land use specific runoff e.g., targeting over-irrigation. A summary of the features included on Alta’s web portal are provided below.
Providing easily accessible from any web-enable device can enable field teams and managers the ability to receive flow alerts to address dry weather flows, illicit discharges, or code compliance issues resulting in actionable events and ultimately leading to meaningful changes for downstream receiving waters.
Our water resources services continue to grow as our clients face compliance challenges related to the drought, water use restrictions, and new storm water regulations. To learn more about our water resources services, including how Alta’s MS4 Flow System can be applied to you program, please give us a call at 888-608-3010 or email our water resources experts:
David Renfrew, QISP/ToR, QSD, CPSWQ, PMP, can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Garth Engelhorn, QISP/ToR, CPSWQ, can be reached via email at email@example.com.