Online discussion: Successful Continuity of Water & Wastewater Services During the COVID-19 Emergency

The Ontario Municipal Water Association (OMWA) and the Water & Wastewater Regulatory Compliance Group (WWRCG) are once again collaborating to deliver a free fully-interactive event to discuss: “Positioning Your Organization for Successful Continuity of Water & Wastewater Services During the COVID-19 Emergency.”

This one-hour, online event is scheduled for 11:00 a.m., Thursday, April 9, 2020.

The event will feature a fully interactive “discussion room” format and the number of participants will be limited and limited to one registration per municipalities/utilities.

The OMWA and WWRCG have developed an online questionnaire consisting of several questions on various COVID-19 water & wastewater related operational issues that each association has identified based on input from our respective members.

After you register, you will receive a registration confirmation email within 8 hours and a link to the online questionnaire that will be the foundation for the event discussions. We would suggest that each municipality/utility coordinate their registration and their response.  Participants will be expected to complete the Poll questionnaire by 4:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 8th. The data from the completed questionnaire will then be compiled and presented on Thursday at 11:00 by our moderators, OMWA President Mike Mortimer, Justyna Burkiewicz from WWRCG and Laura Smit, OMWA Board Director.

Our registrants will then be welcome to discuss results, ask follow-up questions, provide further clarification or to voice their thoughts and opinions during the event to the benefit of all participants.

 Once again, participation in this free fully interactive “discussion room” is limited, so register as soon as possible. Please register as a municipality/utility and be sure to submit your answers and feel free to ask any other specific questions you may have before Wednesday, April 8 at 4:00 p.m.

To register in advance for this webinar, click here.

Webinar Moderators:

Michael Mortimer (President, OMWA)
Justyna Burkiewicz (Member of WWRCG), (Manager, Water & Wastewater Regulatory Compliance, Peel Region)
Laura Smit, (Board Member, OMWA), (Board Member, WCWC), ( Superintendent of Water Treatment and Supply, City of Orillia)

This one-hour event will feature a fully interactive “discussion room” format and the number of participants will be limited and limited to one registration per municipality/utility.
Disclaimer: Registrants acknowledge that this webinar may be recorded and may be shared online with participants and non-participants. Participant comments or questions my be included in the recording.
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Webinar cancelled

The OMWA and The Water & Wastewater Regulatory Compliance Group regret to inform you that late yesterday afternoon we were advised by a representative of the Ministry of Environment, Conservation & Parks (MECP) that they were unable to present today at the scheduled 11:00 a.m. webinar.

We will continue collaborating with MECP and we remain hopeful that we will be able to reschedule and provide all Ontario’s water & wastewater professionals a comprehensive understanding of the regulatory processes during the COVID-19 emergency.

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Free webinar: Understanding changes to MECP processes during the COVID-19 emergency

The Ontario Municipal Water Association (OMWA) and the Water & Wastewater Regulatory Compliance Group (WWRCG) are collaborating to deliver a free webinar “Understanding changes to MECP processes during the COVID-19 emergency to help municipal water, wastewater, and stormwater operations understand and navigate through changes to MECP approvals and regulatory relief processes during the coronavirus emergency.

Join co-hosts Mr. Mike Mortimer, OMWA President,  and Ms. Justyna Burkiewicz from WWWRCG, and guest speaker Mr. Aziz Ahmed, Manager, Municipal Water and Wastewater Permissions Section of MECP, for this free, one- hour interactive webinar scheduled for 11:00 a.m., April 3, 2020. Aziz will help answer your questions and provide guidance to municipalities and utilities during the coronavirus emergency to continue with the operational functions and to maintain compliance. Please note that Assistant Deputy Minister & Chief Drinking Water Inspector, Melissa Thomson and other MECP staff have been invited to also present and we are presently awaiting their confirmation.

This free webinar is open to everyone. Please be sure to submit your specific questions for our speakers on your registration form before Thursday April 2 at 12:00 p.m.

Register in advance for this webinar:
https://us04web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_-z9b7_nKSn24s07VeBS9uA

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Continue reading “Free webinar: Understanding changes to MECP processes during the COVID-19 emergency”

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COVID-19 Webinar files uploaded

The OMWA has uploaded the video and slide show from Friday’s webinar on COVID-19 and Its Impact on Water/Wastewater utilities. You can download the video here (your browser may also allow you to view it online):

COVID-19 webinar (mp4)

And download or view the slide presentation from Stantec here:

Stantec slide show (pdf)

UPDATE: A PDF of the questions and answers from the webinar has also been uploaded. Click here to get a copy.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this event. The OMWA plans to host other educational webinars and events to address this and related issues in the future.

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Emergencies declared by Ontario municipalities

Municipalities with states of emergency

The Province of Ontario enacted a state of emergency March 17 and updated it on March 28 with new restrictions, and on March 30 the period was extended for at least another 14 days. As of April 8, 2020, the following Ontario communities or municipalities have also declared states of emergency due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic:

Amherstburg
Arran-Elderslie
Atikokan
Barrie
Bayham
Bonfield
Bradford West Gwillimbury
Brampton
Brant Cty
Brantford
Brock Twp
Brockton
Bruce Cty
Burlington
Cambridge
Carlow/Mayo Twp
Central Elgin
Central Frontenac
Centre Wellington
Chatham-Kent
Clarington
Cobourg
Cornwall
Continue reading “Emergencies declared by Ontario municipalities”

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Attend our free webinar on COVID-19

Invitarion

Please join OMWA President Mike Mortimer and Stantec’s Nicole McLellan, M.A.Sc., Ph.D. Candidate at 11 a.m. on Friday, Mar. 27 for this free webinar intended for  water and wastewater utilities to help answer your questions related to the fate of coronaviruses in sewage and water, the efficacy of water treatment for coronaviruses, risks to your staff, and how to address public inquiries. Click the registration link below.
The Ontario Municipal Water Association plans to provide ongoing education on the coronavirus as information develops. Please continue to look for updates in your email and in our weekly e-News broadcast.

Sponsored by Stantec and the OMWA.

To register for this free webinar click here: Stantec & OMWA Free webinar on Zoom After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Stantec’s Nicole McLellan, M.A.Sc., Ph.D. Candidate is an environmental scientist with more than 13 years of experience related to water quality and treatment. She is the lead author of Stantec’s whitepaper “Considerations for Water and Wastewater Treatment Related to the Recent Outbreak: COVID-19.” Her areas of expertise comprise water treatment optimization; regulatory compliance; process performance demonstrations; energy optimization; management of disinfection by-products; control of algae blooms; distribution system management; scientific study designs; and wastewater disinfection.

OMWA president Mike Mortimer is the Manager of Environmental Services for the City of Stratford, with a B.Sc. in Environmental Science and Biology, and almost 20 years’ experience in the water industry.

 

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President’s message about COVID-19

OMWA president, Mike MortimerFirst and foremost, I hope this message finds everyone healthy and spending quality time with loved ones during the uncertain period ahead. In times like this, it is also important to remember those less fortunate to help them out when we can, and when it is safe to do so.

These are some of the most challenging times we have faced collectively as a country, province, and municipality. There is uncertainty over day-to-day life, growing concern for our elderly and medically-vulnerable citizens, and anxiety over our well-being and the economy consume our thoughts. Whether you are a small business owner, a banker, or a restaurateur, there are varying perspectives of what this is doing to everyday life. It is an extremely fluid environment that we are all living and adapting to daily.

Water and wastewater professionals are no different.

The world of water and wastewater is unique in the sense that we are not deemed an essential service but yet we are absolutely necessary to ensure the continued public health of our communities. We are not able to just pack up our belongings and go home; we are not able to leave a water main break or a blocked sewer for the next week; we are not able to ignore a low-chlorine residual alarm or a high-level alarm at a sewage pumping station; we are not able to just stop sampling when our normal testing locations have been closed because of this pandemic.

And we don’t want to go home. Water and wastewater professionals are extremely dedicated individuals, committed to ensuring the provision of safe drinking water and the environmentally-sound conveyance of wastewater. There has been no threat to either during this pandemic, and for that we should be extremely grateful, but this is also different for those of us who do this work day-to-day. The threat is not a low-chlorine residual or a looming summer storm, but a threat we have little to no control over. And the question lingers: What if our workforce is impacted?
Continue reading “President’s message about COVID-19”

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