The Ohio Water Resources Center Newsletter

Issue 4 | Volume 8 | August 2022

From Our Directors

On June 15, 2022, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released four drinking water health advisories for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). PFAS are man-made chemicals found in a wide variety of industrial and consumer products. Since PFAS break down very slowly over time, concentrations can accumulate in humans, animals and the environment. The new health advisories come from human studies in populations exposed to these chemicals. Studies found associations between perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), hexafluoropropylene oxide (HFPO) dimer acid and its ammonium salt (known as "GenX chemicals") and perfluorobutane sulfonic acid and its potassium salt (PFBS) — all PFAS members — and health effects on humans. 

EPA's health advisories identify levels to protect all people from the adverse health effects resulting from lifelong exposure to PFAS in drinking water. For PFOA and PFOS, EPA issued interim updated drinking water health advisories levels which will remain in place until the agency establishes a National Primary Drinking Water Regulation. EPA issued final health advisories for GenX chemicals and PFBS. In fall 2022, the agency will propose a PFAS National Drinking Water Regulation. 

EPA also announced that it is inviting states and territories to apply for $1 billion in grant funding to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants in drinking water, specifically in small or disadvantaged communities. The Ohio WRC also encourages researchers to submit research pre-proposals relating to PFAS to our current request for proposals through the Water Resources Research Institute 104(b) Program. Pre-proposals are due to Ohio WRC by September 29, 2022.

There are various resources available online relating to PFAS. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has an interactive PFAS contamination map that documents PFAS pollution in public and private water systems. The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO) completed a survey of ambient PFAS levels in the Ohio River during 2021 and released the results and accompanying report.


Investigating the Extent of Drinking Water Source Contamination in Southeastern Ohio by Air Emissions of HFPO-DA From the Chemours Washington Works Facility

Dr. Andy May and Dr. Linda Weavers from The Ohio State University completed an Ohio Water Resources Center funded project via the Ohio Water Development Authority subaward. Since the 1950's, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) have been used at Chemours Washington Works facility near the Ohio/West Virginia border, and hexafluoropropylene dimer acid (HFPO-DA) is one of the chemicals currently in use. The project aimed to gain a better understanding of the potential extent of the impact of air emissions of HFPO-DA on drinking water sources.

The team deployed passive air samplers to monitor airborne concentrations through select locations ranging from distances of roughly 9.0 miles downwind to roughly 50 miles downwind from the source near Parkersburg, WV. The team observed air concentrations of roughly 10 pg m-3 across all sites, but the observed concentrations were about an order of magnitude greater than air concentrations of perfluorocarboxylic acids collected from a global network of passive air samplers at “background” locations. Thus, the results support the proposed idea that the air emissions of HFPO-DA from the Washington Works facility result in the contamination of drinking water sources in southeastern Ohio. 

USGS Science Highlight

As Sea Levels Rise on U.S. Coasts, Saline Wetlands Are Expected to Displace Freshwater Wetlands, Croplands, Forests and Pastures

Led by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), a new study of 166 estuaries on the Pacific, Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of the U.S. is the first to quantify and compare how sea-level rise will spur landward migration of saline coastal wetlands in the coming decades. The movement of the wetlands will drive ecological shifts as the seaward edges of coastal saline or brackish marshes and mangrove forests are expected to transform to open water while their landward edges invade freshwater wetlands and other valuable landscapes farther upland.


The study found that two-thirds of potential saline wetland migration is expected to occur at the expense of coastal freshwater wetlands and one-third is expected to occur at the expense of valuable uplands, including croplands, forests, pastures and grasslands. 79% of the total potential wetland loss is expected to occur along the coasts of North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Louisiana and Texas. The findings will help inform decision-makers on how to preserve coastal ecosystems.

News Updates

Property Values Affected by Lake Erie Algal Blooms, Research Finds 

Via WTOL 11, July 22, 2022

EPA Issues Final Rule to Require Reporting on Five PFAS 

Via US EPA, July 18, 2022

Scientists Studying How Wetlands Can Help Lake Erie

Via The Advertiser-Tribune, July 16, 2022 

US Legislation Would Limit PFAS in Industrial Wastewater 

Via C&EN, July 15, 2022

U.S. EPA and Ohio EPA At Odds Over How Much Phosphorus Euclid Can Discharge Into Lake Erie 

Via, July 03, 2022

Below-Average Harmful Algal Bloom Predicted for Western Lake Erie

Via NOAA, June 30, 2022 

Have a news article you'd like us to feature? Email us at!

Policy Update

Ohio EPA DDAGW: 'Amend' Rulemaking Governing Underground Injection Control Rules

The Ohio EPA Division of Drinking and Ground Waters (DDAGW) seeks comments on proposed rulemaking governing the Underground Injection Control rules which establish requirements for construction, permitting, maintenance, operations and closure of underground injection wells. Comments must be submitted by email to by close of business August 15, 2022.


Ohio EPA DDAGW: Proposed 'Amend' Rulemaking – Backflow and Cross Connection Control Rules

The Ohio EPA Division of Drinking and Ground Waters (DDAGW) seeks comments to proposed revisions to rules in Chapter 3745-95 of the Ohio Administrative Code which describes backflow prevention and cross connection control requirements. The official notice and information on how to submit comments can be found here. Comments are due by close of business August 22, 2022.


Notice of Intent: NAWI Internal Funding Opportunity

The National Alliance for Water Innovation has released a Notice of Intent (NOI) for an Internal Funding Opportunity Announcement (IFOA). NAWI will seek proposals that deliver impact aligned with NAWI’s pipe parity metrics and address important challenges relating to water and energy security in the U.S. Eligibility for participation is limited to NAWI consortium members that have signed the NAWI consortium agreement by the date on which the IFOA is released. The tentative IFOA release date is set for early to mid-August 2022. Read the complete NOI here.

Competition: US EPA Make A Market Tech Challenge

The U.S. EPA has launched a challenge for undergraduate and graduate students in U.S. accredited colleges and universities to develop market strategies to help transition EPA technologies to the marketplace. Teams or individual participants choose one of five patented EPA technologies, such as the Water Contamination Detection Kit. More information is available here. The deadline to submit is December 31, 2022.

Call for Papers: MDPI Journal of Water Special Issue

The Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI) is inviting paper contributions to the Special Issue of the Journal of Water titled “Green Water-Infrastructure Systems: Advances in Research and Technology.” Potential submissions include original research papers, overviews, technology innovations, case studies and articles on topics such as the potential impacts of green water-infrastructure systems, water conservation and more. The submission deadline is February 28, 2023. More information is available here.

Call for Articles: Ohio Section American Water Works Association (AWWA)

In an effort to highlight members' knowledge, experiences, and achievements, Ohio AWWA is accepting technical articles and success stories. The intent is to highlight this content by including it in the 2022 issues of the Ohio Section Newsletter. Send a request to submit with a synopsis of the article to Deadline for the spring issue is February 8, summer issue is April 22 and winter issue is October 8.

To find more resources offered by Ohio WRC, please visit:

Upcoming Events

Webinar: The Impacts of Intel: A Energy and Water Panel Discussion

August 5, 2022 • Virtual

Registration is open for an online event featuring a discussion between industry experts, researchers and government leaders on the impact of Intel’s plan to build the largest semiconductor chip manufacturing facility ever built in New Albany, Ohio. The Energy and Water Panelist includes Ohio WRC Co-Director Linda Weavers.

Webinar: Assistance and Resources from Ohio EPA & OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program

August 9, 2022 • Virtual

Ohio EPA will be hosting a webinar to discuss free and confidential resources available through Ohio EPA and OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program to help navigate environment, safety and health regulations for businesses. Registration is open. 

Lake Erie Awareness Day

August 11, 2022 • Put-In-Bay, OH

Brought to you by Ohio Sea Grant and other partners, Lake Erie Awareness day features education stations across South Bass Island to learn about island history, native plants and animals, the dangers of plastic pollution and boating safety. More information is available here.

Workshop: Ohio EPA Grant Writing Workshop

August 16, 2022 • OSU Extension, Mahoning County

Registration is open for a grant writing workshop hosted by the Ohio EPA. Topics include how to find the right funder, approaching different kinds of grantmakers, avoiding common mistakes applicants make and developing realistic objectives, activities and budgets.

Webinar: Freshwater Science: Lake Erie Algae in the Depth of Winter

August 30, 2022 • Virtual

Registration is open for a webinar discussing new research from Ohio Sea Grant, Stone Lab and the Harmful Algal Bloom Research Initiative. Dr. Mike McKay is taking advantage of U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards ships' ice-breaking capabilities to sample offshore waters in winter and early spring for algae. 

Conference: Understanding Algal Blooms: State of the Science Conference

September 7, 2022 • Toledo, OH

Registration is open for this conference hosted by Ohio Sea Grant that will highlight current scientific knowledge related to algal blooms. Research and outreach leaders will present findings from recent studies and identify important areas of uncertainty. The deadline to register is September 1, 2022. 

Have an event you'd like us to feature? Email us at!

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