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Thoughts From Engineers: Water Scarcity is Common: The Grim Reality of Freshwater Supplies Worldwide

October 17, 2019 - in Articles, Column

Most news headlines barely get my attention, but it was startling to come across a list of 11 cities projected to experience serious water shortages within the next 50 years due to a combination of polluted and diminishing water supplies, climate change and…

Thoughts From Engineers: When a Deep Tunnel Isn’t Enough: Milwaukee Wrestles with Combined Sewer Overflows

August 23, 2019 - in Articles, Column

The City of Milwaukee was on the cusp of a victory lap. After several expansions to the Deep Tunnel storage system and other significant district-wide…

Thoughts From Engineers: Look to the Watershed to Protect Water Quality

July 8, 2019 - in Articles, Column

The results of an in-depth study of groundwater released in early 2019 showed that 42 percent of private wells in southwest Wisconsin are contaminated…

Thoughts From Engineers: A First for the Great Lakes: Water Piped Out and Back In

June 3, 2019 - in Articles, Column

The city of Waukesha, Wis., received permission in 2016 to divert 8.2 million gallons of Lake Michigan water per day as a new source of drinking water. Waukesha will use Milwaukee’s existing infrastructure to pump water out of Lake Michigan and 12.5 miles…

Thoughts From Engineers: The Hidden Monster That’s Our Failing Water Infrastructure

May 2, 2019 - in Articles, Column

An aging house built in the 1930s with chipping paint, a porch door that swings eerily in the wind and precariously leaning support beams gets attention. A bridge with rusty trusses and roads with potholes get attention as well. People complain—loudly—to…

Thoughts From Engineers: Rethinking the Water We Drink

March 4, 2019 - in Articles, Column

Although it may come as a surprise to some, a few communities in the United States must work harder and invest more to secure clean drinking water every day. In a particularly bone-dry part of the country, one municipality has been working on a thorny water-supply…

Thoughts from Engineers: Initial Reactions from the Water Infrastructure Act of 2018

January 14, 2019 - in Articles, Column

America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 (AWIA 2018) or S. 3021 was signed into law by President Trump on Oct. 23, 2018, and outlines an ambitious course of action with respect to the nation’s navigable waterways and built water infrastructure. (To read…

Thoughts From Engineers: Water 4.0: Time to Consider an Alternative Paradigm

April 17, 2018 - in Articles, Column

Our present-day style of managing water hasn’t strayed much from the centralized approach employed by the Romans some 2,000 years ago. This was fine when cities first began to modernize, but the 21st century requires something different. This is the conclusion…

Thoughts From Engineers: Robot Engineers? You May Lose Your White-Collar Job to a Robot Sooner than You Think

February 28, 2018 - in Articles, Column

According to the International Data Corp. (IDC), a global provider of market intelligence and analysis, big changes in the U.S. workforce will happen quickly and at a scale you never would have expected. The report, “IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Robotics 2017…

Engineer Spotlight: The Unhappy State of U.S. Bridges and Highways

October 10, 2016 - in Articles, Column

An interesting article ran in the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Journal of Leadership and Management in Engineering in 2008: “A Tale of Two Bridges: Dangerous and Still Standing.” Robert W. Clark, P.E., authored the piece about two well-used…