On The Radio – UI grad organizes committee to address water needs for small towns


Matt Wildman leads a committee that focuses on wastewater treatment solutions for small Iowa communities. (KC McGinnis/CGRER)
Matt Wildman leads a committee that focuses on wastewater treatment solutions for small Iowa communities. (KC McGinnis/CGRER)
Nick Fetty | January 18, 2016

This week’s On The Radio segments looks at a University of Iowa graduate who has organized a committee that he hopes will assist small Iowa communities in addressing wastewater treatment and water infrastructure needs. 

Transcript: UI grad starts committee to address water needs for small towns

A University of Iowa graduate has started up a committee that he hopes will make wastewater projects more affordable for small communities.

This is the Iowa Environmental Focus.

Matt Wildman – a Project Manager for the Cedar Rapid-based engineering firm HR Green – hosted the inaugural meeting for the Iowa Water Environmental Association’s Small Community Committee last week. Roughly a dozen engineers as well as governmental officials at city and state level were at the meeting to discuss ways that various public and private entities can work together to improve water treatment systems and infrastructure.

Wildman – who holds a master’s degree in civil and environmental engineering from the University of  Iowa – said that he hopes the members of his committee will be able to work with state regulators, city officials, engineers, and others to make wastewater projects more practical for small communities that have limited resources. He said that certain regulations can make these projects especially difficult.

“What I’ve seen occur is that new regulations come down, new permits get issued, and a lot of times this seems to be a shock to these small communities. When they get a shock then they have to figure out how to fund things. There are a lot of communities in the state that are low- to middle-income that are disadvantaged communities and doing a one million to five million to ten million dollar wastewater treatment plant is not within their financial capabilities. So to kind of give them an education of what to prepare for and address that and be ready for those financial impacts as well as look at other technologies that can help bring those costs down.”

For more information about this committee and do find out ways you can get involved, visit Iowa-Environmental-Focus-dot-org.

From the UI Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research, I’m Nick Fetty.

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