Our attention has also been focused on important COVID-19 research currently underway, including studies exploring the potential to detect and monitor the virus in wastewater, known as wastewater surveillance. Researchers locally and internationally are investigating how this strategy can be used by municipalities to provide early detection of arrival or changes in the prevalence of COVID-19 in communities.

OCWA is a core supporter of the COVID-19 Wastewater Coalition’s Ontario Hub. The Coalition is a national collaboration of municipal utilities, researchers, public health agencies and government brought together by the Canadian Water Network, with a shared goal of protecting public health from COVID-19 through wastewater surveillance. The Ontario Hub is focused on ensuring that the wastewater surveillance methods used by municipalities in the province will provide information that advances an understanding of community spread and meaningfully impacts public health decisions. OCWA is pleased to be financially supporting the formation of the Hub to help ensure that critical knowledge is shared and Ontario municipalities can best benefit from this emerging early warning tool. We are also supporting a specific wastewater surveillance research project led by Ontario Tech University and Durham Region.

Turning to Waterline, I am very pleased to announce that OCWA has a number of new Board appointments. Together our new members bring decades of experience and leadership in key areas including water and wastewater treatment, facility construction, and biosolids and organics management, as well as financing and legal. We have also added a number of highly experienced water and wastewater staff to our team here at OCWA, in the areas of innovation and infrastructure solutions, asset management and conveyance. We are confident that these individuals will help enhance our service delivery in a number of growth areas for the Agency and we encourage you to reach out to them.

In this issue we also highlight a challenge faced in many parts of Ontario – the occurrence of discoloured tap water due to elevated levels of minerals such as manganese and iron in source water. The article below and related case study describe how the Town of Kirkland Lake and OCWA partnered to find a cost-effective solution for the Town’s water discolouration issues. If your community is experiencing issues with water discolouration, we would be pleased to discuss potential solutions tailored to your unique situation. Please contact your local OCWA representative or email ocwa@ocwa.com.

– Nevin McKeown, President & CEO, OCWA
Solutions for Water Discolouration Issues
Chlorine dioxide treatment system the key for one community
Occurrences of discoloured tap water are caused by a number of different factors. In many parts of Ontario, elevated levels of minerals such as manganese and iron in source water are the culprits. The treated water remains safe to drink and presents an aesthetic problem only. But even with that assurance, some consumers may understandably be turned off from using brownish tap water.

That was the situation in the Town of Kirkland Lake, which had been experiencing increasing levels of manganese and iron in its source water, Gull Lake, for 20 years. Over time, the problem had intensified, especially during the winter, due to the changing climate and an aging distribution system.

As the system operator, OCWA explored different solutions with the Town. After considering several options, a decision was made to pilot a chlorine dioxide treatment system. With this option, the Town would not have to install expensive new intake or immediately replace distribution piping.
In January 2018, the treatment system was commissioned at the water filtration plant that is designed to remove iron and manganese from the raw water. The pilot garnered positive results, with the Town receiving significantly fewer calls from the public regarding the water and operators reporting a noticeable difference in water quality.

Due to the pilot’s success and the cost-effectiveness of the solution, the Kirkland Lake Town Council agreed to install the chlorine dioxide system on a permanent basis.

To learn about this project in more detail, please read the project case study.

If your community is having issues with water discolouration, OCWA would be pleased to discuss potential solutions tailored to your unique situation. Please contact your local OCWA representative or email ocwa@ocwa.com.
Watch for More OCWA Webinars this Fall
Earlier this month, more than 50 municipal representatives attended Water & Wastewater Prioritization: Within your budget, using your AMP, a free hour-long OCWA webinar presented by Nick Larson, Senior Project Manager, Project Planning and Delivery and moderated by John Kingsbury, Director Business Development.

Thanks to everyone who joined us for this very well-received session, which was part of our now-online OCWA Water Talks series. Stay tuned for details on more webinars coming this fall, including another talk from Nick on asset management planning and presentations by OCWA experts on a range of other topics.
Staff Announcements
OCWA is pleased to make the following staff announcements:
Iman Hashemi, M.Eng. is OCWA’s new Vice President, Innovation and Infrastructure Solutions. Iman has spent his entire career in the water industry, working for GE Water (now SUEZ) before joining OCWA in 2011 as a Process and Energy Optimization Specialist, South Peel Water System. In 2016, he became the Manager of the Arthur P. Kennedy Water Treatment Plant in Peel. Since then, he has led trials of innovative technologies in treatment facilities, managed state of good repair large budgets for clients, and implemented advanced facility maintenance programs. In his new role, Iman will be responsible for leading the Agency’s engineering, process optimization and energy management groups. Iman can be reached at IHashemi@ocwa.com.
Mike Mortimer has joined OCWA to lead our Conveyance Services Group, in the position of Regional Hub Manager. Mike comes to us from the City of Stratford and brings with him a wealth of operations and operations management experience, most recently as the City’s Manager of Collection and Distribution. Mike also has experience with the Region of Waterloo and the City of Kitchener. Mike can be reached at MMortimer@ocwa.com.
Nick Larson joined us earlier this year as Senior Project Manager, Project Planning & Delivery. Nick is a P. Eng. and has 14 years of experience working with municipal governments on a variety of infrastructure asset management and municipal engineering projects, most recently with GM Blueplan. He will be splitting his time between OCWA's Project Planning & Delivery and Business & Asset Management Standards groups. Nick's role will include supporting the delivery of AM plans to our clients and helping to build OCWA’s internal AM capabilities. Nick can be reached at NLarson@ocwa.com.
Board Announcements
OCWA is pleased to make the following Board announcements:
Quirien Muylwyk, MASc., P.Eng. is the Practice Director for Water Quality at AECOM Americas, where she leads efforts to improve public health via infrastructure investments, including the management of water quality in the distribution system and at the customer’s tap. Prior to joining AECOM, Quirien was the Business Development and Technology Manager for Water Canada with CH2M HILL across all platforms including drinking water, wastewater, water resources, conveyance, operations, and industrial water. She has worked with water systems to optimize performance and prioritize future investments, including the implementation of pragmatic solutions to reduce the risk of lead exposure from drinking water. Quirien has also worked with water utilities across North America and has collaborated with the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation & Parks, Health Canada and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Active with the American Water Works Association, Quirien is a past chair of the Water Quality and Technology Division, a past member of the Technical and Education Council, and is currently a member of the Distribution System Water Quality Committee and the Premise Plumbing Committee.
Richard Austin has spent most of his professional career as a financial services lawyer and became increasingly involved in securities, and mutual fund dealer, financial planning and securities dealer matters in particular, over the past 20 years. Richard has held a variety of positions, including Senior Legal Counsel with the Ontario Securities Commission, Vice President, Legal and Business Affairs for Money Concepts, Deputy Head of Compliance, Wealth Management Scotiabank and Counsel at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP. He works part-time as the General Counsel of Lending Loop, a peer-to-peer fintech lending organization. Richard has been a member of boards of the Investment Funds Institute of Canada, Scotia Securities Inc. and the Association of Canadian Compliance Professionals.
Michael Watt, P.Eng. is the Executive Vice President of the Environmental Division at Walker Industries, headquartered in Niagara Falls. He is responsible for a wide portfolio of businesses in the environmental field, including composting, biosolids treatment, growing media from waste organics, grease trap and organics collection as well as the traditional waste management services of landfill, waste transportation and logistics. He specializes in business development, change management and mergers and acquisitions. Michael also sits on the Ontario Waste Management Association Board, where he previously served as Chair for two terms. 
Larry Taylor has been in the waterworks industry for more than 39 years and is currently the Ontario District Manager at Emco Corporation Waterworks. Larry's career began in 1981 as a utility worker at London Public Utilities. He then changed career paths and was employed at Canada Valve in wholesale distribution before transferring to Emco Corporation Waterworks, where he has been for 31 years. In 1994, Larry was elected to the Board of Directors for the Strathroy PUC. In 2011, he became Board Chairman for the Ontario Municipal Manufacturers and Distributors Committee under the Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association (OSWCA). Larry served as Vice-President of OSWCA in 2017 and President in 2018. He is currently Past President. 
OCWA is an agency of the Province of Ontario mandated to provide safe, reliable 
and cost-effective clean water services to the people of Ontario.

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