Virginia’s Annual Statewide Tornado Drill will be March 20, 2018

Virginia’s annual statewide tornado drill will be held Tuesday, March 20, 2018, at 9:45 a.m.  If widespread severe weather threatens the Commonwealth on that date, the drill will be on  Wednesday, March 21, at 9:45 a.m.

According to the Virginia Department of Emergency Management’s notice about the 2018 drill (online at, “the Statewide Tornado Drill is a yearly opportunity to prepare Virginians for tornado emergencies and to test public warning systems.  At approximately 9:45 a.m., the National Weather Service will send a test tornado warning over NOAA Weather Radios.  This test signal will sound a tone alert, show a test message or flash to indicate a message, simulating what people would hear or see during an actual tornado warning.  Local radio stations, TV stations and cable outlets will also broadcast the test message via the Emergency Alert System.”

To participate, see “How to Conduct a Tornado Drill,” online at

More Information from the VDEM on tornado safety is available online at  Please see also the Water Central News Grouper Post, Tornado Preparedness in Virginia.

In Town of Pulaski Apr14 03 USED RADIO 3-11-14 Grouper 2-20-18

April 14, 2011, photo of damage in Pulaski, Va., from a tornado on April 8 of that year.

On Virginia Water Radio for 2-19-18: Frogs are an Early Sign of Spring in Virginia

Virginia Water Radio’s episode for the week of February 19, 2018, is “A Frog and Toad Medley.”  The 3 min./27 sec. episode, available online at, features a medley of amphibian a cappellas to signal the start of another annual frog and toad calling season.

408 image 1 Frog Site 3 Heritage park 02-18-18 1pm
A seasonal pond in Blacksburg, Va., where mating Wood Frogs were calling on February 18, 2018.

Virginia Water Radio’s is a weekly broadcast/podcast produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center.  The home page is  Have a listen or two!

A Water Conference Sampler from around the United States and Elsewhere – February 15, 2018, Edition

Here are some water-related meetings in the United States and other countries in coming months.  Following that is a list of water-related or land use-related organizations holding annual conferences or other annual events, listed in alphabetical order by organization or event name.

This post is updated as the Virginia Water Resources Research Center learns of new events and a new version is re-posted at least quarterly.  If you would like an event added, please send basic information (date, location, event title, event organizer, Web site, and contact information) to with subject line: For Water Central Editor.

Some of the information for this edition was provided by the Virginia Water Monitoring Council (VWMC), supported in part by grants from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality’s Citizen Monitoring Grant Program and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency through the Virginia Department of Health.  More information about the VWMC is available online at

This post is for non-Virginia events; for water meetings and other events in the Old Dominion, please see the Virginia Water Resources Research Center’s online Quick Guide to Virginia Water-related Events.


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, W. Va. (shown here in Sep. 2014) annually hosts many water-related meetings, including the Chesapeake Watershed Forum each fall.


2018 Events

Feb. 28-Mar. 1, 2018, Toronto, Canada: 51st International Conference on Water Management Modeling.  More information:

March 12-16, 2018, San Diego, Calif.: Sixth International Marine Debris Conference.  Organized by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and UN Environment.  More information:

March 14-15, 2018, Raleigh, N.C.: Annual Conference of the Water Resources Research Institute of the University of North Carolina.  More information:

Mar. 19-21, 2018, Portland, Ore.: Design-Build for Water/ Wastewater Conference.  More information:

Mar. 25-28, 2018, Seattle, Wash.: Sustainable Water Management Conference.  Organized by the American Water Resources Association.  More information:

Mar. 26-29, 2018, Orlando, Fla.: National Hurricane Conference.  More information:

Mar. 28, 2018, Tucson, Ariz.: Arizona Water Resources Research Center annual conference.  This year’s theme is “The Business of Water.”  More information:; phone: (520) 621-9591; e-mail:

Apr. 10, 2018, location to be determined: National Watershed and Stormwater Conference.  Organized by the Center for Watershed Protection.   More information:; phone: (410) 461-8323 (Ellicott City, Md.); e-mail: (Chris Swann).

Apr. 15-17, 2018, Burlington, Vt.: 74th Annual Northeast Fish & Wildlife Conference.  More information:

Apr. 16-20, 2018, Ponte Vedra, Fla.: 33rd Conference on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology.  More information:

Apr. 22-25, 2018, Orlando, Fla.: GIS and Water Resources X.  Spring specialty conference of the American Water Resources Association.  More information; (540) 687-8390 (Middleburg, Va.); e-mail:

Apr. 24-26, 2018, Washington, D.C.: American Meteorological Society Washington Forum.  This year’s theme is “Connecting Science and Technology with Business and Public Policy.”  More information:

Apr. 24-26, 2018, Fort Collins, Colo.: FLOW 2018 Workshop.  The theme this year is “Managing Rivers, Reservoirs, and Lakes in the Face of Drought.”  Organized by the Instream Flow Council.  More information:

May, 22-23, 2018: Annual conference of the Choose Clean Water Coalition (a group of some 200 organizations in the Chesapeake Bay watershed; based in Annapolis, Md.).  More information; (443) 759-3407;

Jun. 26-29, 2018, Nebraska and Wyoming: University of Nebraska Water Center’s Annual Water and Natural Resources Tour.  More information:

Jun. 3-7, 2018, Minneapolis, Minn.: World Environmental and Water Resources Congress.  More information:

Jun. 11-14, 2018, Las Vegas, Nev.: American Water Works Association Annual Conference and Exposition.  More information:

Jun. 12-14, 2018, Annapolis, Md.: Sixth Biennial Chesapeake Modeling Symposium.  Organized by the Chesapeake Community Modeling Program.  More information: visit this Facebook page, or

Jun. 17-22, 2018, Madrid, Spain: 37th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore, and Arctic Engineering.  Organized by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.  More information:

Jun. 18-20, 2018, Portland, Ore.: 22nd Annual Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference.  Organized by the American Chemical Society.  More information:

Jun. 18-21, 2018, Raleigh, N.C.: Nutrient Removal and Recovery Conference 2018.  Organized by the Water Environment Federation in cooperation with the North Carolina Section of the American Water Works Association and the Water Research Foundation.  More information:; e-mail:

Jun. 20-23, 2018, Washington, D.C.: Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences Annual Conference.  More information:

Jun. 26-28, 2018, Pittsburgh, Penn.: Universities Council on Water Resources (UCOWR)/ National Institutes for Water Resources (NIWR) Conference.  More information:

Jul. 9-11, 2018, Fort Worth, Tex.: The Science, Management, and Governance of Transboundary Groundwater.  Summer conference of the American Water Resources Association.  More information:; (540) 687-8390 (Middleburg, Va.);

Jul. 10-12, 2018, Minneapolis, Minn: One Water Summit.  Organized by the U.S. Water Alliance.  More information:

Jul. 15-20, 2018, Long Beach, Calif.: National Marine Educators Association Annual Conference.  More information:

Jul. 23-26, 2018, Boston, Mass.: Utility Leadership Conference and 48th Annual Meeting of the National Association of Clean Water Agencies.  More information:

Jul. 23-26, 2018, Shepherdstown, W.Va.: Sixth Interagency Conference on Research in the Watersheds.  This year’s theme is “Working Watersheds and Coastal Systems: Research and Management for a Changing Future.”  Organized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in partnership with several other federal agencies and CUAHSI (Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science).  More information:

Jul. 29-Aug. 1, 2018, Albuquerque, N.M.: Soil and Water Conservation Society International Annual Conference.  More information:

Aug. 5-10, 2018, New Orleans, La.: Ecological Society of American Annual Meeting.  More information:

Aug. 6-10, 2018, New York, N.Y.: 10th International Conference on Urban Climate and 14th Symposium on the Urban Environment.  Organized by the American Meteorological Society.  More information:

Aug. 19-23, 2018, Atlantic City, N.J.: 148th Annual Meeting of the American Fisheries Society.  More information:

Aug. 26-31, 2018, Stockholm, Sweden: World Water Week.  This year’s theme is “Water, Ecosystems, and Human Development.”  Organized by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI).  More information:

Sep. 9-12, 2018, Tampa, Fla.: Annual Meeting of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies.  More information:

Sep. 12-14, 2018, San Francisco, Calif.: Global Climate Action Summit.  More information:

Sep. 17-19, 2018, Fort Worth, Tex.: National Rural Water Association WaterPro Conference.  More information:

Sep. 28-Oct. 3, 2018, Atlanta, Ga.: American Society of Plumbing Engineers and American Rainwater Catchment Systems Association Co-Conference.  More information:

Sep. 29-Oct. 3, 2018, New Orleans, La.: WEFTEC 2018—91st Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference [on water quality technology, education, and training].  Organized by the Water Environment Federation (headquartered in Alexandria, Va.).  More information:; phone (703) 684-2400.

Oct. 3-5, 2018, Hilton Head, S.C.: Annual Southeast Stormwater Association Regional Stormwater Conference.  More information:

Oct. 30-Nov. 2, 2018, Cincinnati, Ohio: 38th International Symposium of the North American Lake Management Society.  More information:

Nov. 4-7, 2018, Baltimore, Md.: Annual joint meeting of the American Society of Agronomy and the Crop Science Society of America.  More information:

Nov. 4-7, 2018, Indianapolis, Ind.: Geological Society of American Annual Meeting and Exposition.  More information:

Nov. 4-8, 2018, Baltimore, Md: American Water Resources Association Annual Conference.  More information:; (540) 687-8390 (Middleburg, Va.); e-mail:

Nov. 4-8, 2018, Sacramento, Calif.: Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry North American Annual Meeting.  More information:

Dec. 10-14, 2018, Washington, D.C.: American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting.  More information:

Sampler of Water-related/Land Use-related Organizations Holding Annual Conferences (in Alphabetical Order)

American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).  More information:

American Fisheries Society.  More information:

American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting.  More information:

American Geophysical Union, the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, and the Oceanography Society joint Ocean Sciences Meeting. More information:

American Meteorological Society. More information:

American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America.  More information:

American Water Resources Association (AWRA).  More information:; (540) 687-8390 (Middleburg, Va.);

American Water Works Association.  More information:

Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society.  More information:

Chesapeake Watershed Forum.  Organized by the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay.  More information:; (804) 775-0951 (Virginia office) or

Choose Clean Water Coalition (a group of some 200 organizations in the Chesapeake Bay watershed; based in Annapolis, Md.).  More information; (443) 759-3407;

Colorado Water Congress.  More information:; phone (303) 837-0812.

Ecological Society of America.  More information:

Green Chemistry & Engineering Conference.  Organized by the American Chemical Society.  More information:

Groundwater Protection Council and National Rural Water Association’s (NWRA) WaterPro Conference.  More information:

High Plains Irrigation Conference and Trade Show.  Organized by the Texas A&M University Agrilife Research and Extension Center.  More information:; phone (806) 677-5644.

Maryland Water Monitoring Council.  More information:

Multi-State Salinity Coalition.  More information:

National Hurricane Conference.  More information:

National Marine Educators Association.  More information:; phone (844) 687-6632; e-mail:

National Water Quality Monitoring Council.  More information:

North American Association for Environmental Education.  More information:; phone: (202) 419-0412 (Washington, D.C.).

North American Lake Management Society.  More information:; phone (608) 233-2836 (Madison, Wisc.).

North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference. Organized by the Wildlife Management Institute.  More information:

Northeast Fish & Wildlife Conference. More information:

Pesticides and the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Project.  Organized by the Maryland Conservation Council.  More information:;

Shellfish Restoration International Conference.  Organized by South Carolina Sea Grant.  More information:; phone (843) 953-2078.

Society of American Foresters. More information:

Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.  More information:

Soil and Water Conservation Society.  More information:

South Carolina Water Resources Conference.  Organized by Clemson University Public Service Activities.  More information:

Sustaining Colorado Watersheds.  Organized by the Colorado Watershed Assembly, Colorado Foundation for Water Education, and Colorado Riparian Association.  More information:; phone (720) 722-4213; e-mail:

Universities Council on Water Resources (UCOWR), the National Institutes for Water Resources (NIWR), and the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc. (CUAHSI).  More information:; or contact UCOWR at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, (618) 536-7571 or

University of Minnesota Water Resources Center.  More information:

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Water Center’s annual Water and Natural Resources Tour.  More information:

Water Environment Federation (WEFTEC).  More information:

Water for Food Global Conference.  More information:; phone (402) 472-5145; e-mail:

Water Management Modeling International Conference.  Organized by Computational Hydraulics International (CHI) of Guelph, Ontario.  More information:

Water Week.  Organized by the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, Water Environment Federation, and Water Environment Research Foundation.  More information:

Western South Dakota Hydrology Meeting. Organized by the U.S. Geological Survey’s South Dakota Water Science Center and several partners.  More information:; Janet Carter, (605) 394-3215 or

Dan River Basin Interactive Map Under Development in 2018

As of early 2018, the Dan River Basin Association (DRBA) was continuing work on an online, interactive map of the basin.  The map is available at  Ultimately it is envisioned to show river access points, trails, parks, cultural/historical attractions, visitor centers, and river clean-up locations.  For more information, visit DRBA’s main Web site at; or phone (315) 209-5055 for the Danville, Va., office or (336) 627-6261 for the Eden, N.C., office.

Virginia Water-related Government Meetings for Feb. 15-Feb. 28, 2018, Including Virginia General Assembly Information

For more information, click on underlined meeting dates. Click here for the Commonwealth Calendar listing of all government meetings open to the public, and here for the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall listing of all government meetings of a regulatory nature.

For other, non-governmental, events, please see the Water Central News Grouper post, Quick Guide to Virginia Water-related Events.


2/15/18, 10 a.m.: Outdoors Foundation.  At the Department of Forestry, 900 Natural Resources Drive in Charlottesville.  The Foundation’s Preservation Trust Fund Committee meets that day at 9 a.m. at the same location.

2/20/18, 9 a.m.: Gas and Oil Board.  At the Russell County Office Building, 139 Highland Drive in Lebanon.

2/24/18, 11 a.m.: Cave Board.  At the Staunton Public Library, 1 Churchville Avenue in Staunton.

2/27/18, 9:30 a.m.: Marine Resources Commission.  At 2600 Washington Avenue in Newport News.

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For meetings of legislative committees and commissions, see  Links to information about General Assembly commissions, councils, and special interim committees coordinated by the Division of Legislative Services are available online at

Jan. 10-Mar. 2018: Virginia General Assembly, Richmond.  The 2018 General Assembly convenes on January 10 and is scheduled for 60 days; this is a so-called “long session,” which is held in all even-numbered years.  The reconvened (“veto”) session will be held in April.  During long sessions, the Commonwealth’s budget for the upcoming two years is set; amendments to the current biennial budget may be considered both in long and short sessions.  In some years, sessions are extended beyond the scheduled length, particularly for budget discussions (any session may be extended for up to 30 days).  The General Assembly’s Web site,, offers several useful features, including member lists, session calendars, live video of floor sessions, and information on legislative processes.  The Legislative Information System (LIS) Web site,, provides lists and summaries of all bills, searchable by topic, member, committee, etc.  Live video streams of floor sessions are available at for the House and for the Senate.  Committees are key parts of the General Assembly process. Legislation about water or about activities that can affect water may be assigned to any of several standing committees, most of which meet weekly during the General Assembly session.  As of 2018, live streaming of committee meetings is available.  Information on live streaming of House committee meetings is online at;  for Senate committee meetings, online at

Two committees that receive many (but not all) of the water-related bills are the House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources Committee, which meets weekly on Wednesdays, 8:30 a.m. (2018 location to be determined, as of 1/10/18); and the Senate Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources Committee, which meets weekly on Thursdays, one-half hour after adjournment of the day’s floor session, in the Senate Committee Room on the ground floor of the Pocahontas Building, 900 East Main Street in Richmond.  Information about all standing committees as of the 2018 session—including membership, meeting times, and legislation being considered—is available online at

Relevant subcommittee meetings for this period:

2/19/18, 4 p.m.: House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources/Subcommittee #1.  Room E400-B, Pocahontas Building, 900 East Main Street in Richmond.

2/21/18, 3 p.m.: House Appropriations Committee/Commerce, Agriculture, Natural Resources and Technology Subcommittee.  Room E007, Pocahontas Building, 900 East Main Street in Richmond.

Natural resource-related caucus meetings for this period:

2/15/18, 7 a.m.: Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus.  House Subcommittee Room 2, Room E200-B, Pocahontas Building, 900 East Main Street in Richmond.

2/19/18, 4:30 p.m.: Virginia Environment and Renewable Energy Caucus.  Room E200-B, Pocahontas Building, 900 East Main Street in Richmond.

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For more information about TMDLs in Virginia, click here for the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality TMDL Web site; click on “Public Notices” in the menu to the left to access upcoming meetings and public-comment periods.  A search tool to find approved TMDL reports is available at

None during this period.

*          *          *

(topics listed alphabetically)

Energy – Wind
2/28/18, 10 a.m.: Offshore Wind Development Authority.  According to the Authority’s Web site,, the 2010 Virginia General Assembly (companion bills HB 389 and SB 577) created this Authority to “facilitate, coordinate, and support development of the offshore wind energy industry, offshore wind energy projects, and supply chain vendors….”

Land and Watershed Management
2/26/18, 6 p.m.: Spearhead Trails Board of Directors.  At Dungannon Depot, 344 Phoenix Street in Dungannon (Scott County).  This meeting is sponsored by the Heart of Appalachia Tourism Authority, online at  Spearhead Trials is an initiative of the Southwest Regional Recreation Area; more information is available online at

Scenic Rivers
2/15/18, 12 p.m.: Historic Falls of the James Scenic River Advisory Board.  At Richmond City Hall.

Water Quality Regulations and Standards
2/16/18, 10 a.m.: Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) technical advisory committee on proposed amendments to the Virginia Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (VPDES) general permit for discharges of stormwater from construction activities.  At the Virginia Department of Fire Programs, 1005 Technology Park Drive in Glen Allen (Henrico County).  The relevant section of the Virginia Administrative Code is 9 VAC 25-880.  The notice of intended regulatory action was published in the Virginia Register of Regulations on October 16, 2017.  More information on this regulatory action is available online at

2/21/18, 1 p.m.: Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) regulatory advisory panel meeting on the triennial review of water-quality standards for bacteria, ammonia, cadmium and human health criteria) (9 VAC 25-260 in the Virginia Administrative Code).  At the DEQ Central Office, 1111 East Main Street in Richmond.  As of February 2018, this panel is focusing on the bacteria element of the review and proposed amendments, responding to comments received during the public comment period in fall 2017.  According to DEQ information online at, Virginia Code section 62.1-44.15 (3a), part of Virginia’s State Water Control Law, requires the State Water Control Board to review and update the Commonwealth’s water-quality standards at least every three years.  The Board conducted a triennial review in 2015, but the Board deferred to a separate rulemaking updates to freshwater aquatic life criteria for ammonia, amendments to the 94 human health criteria, and new EPA recommendations for recreation waters criteria (bacteria) and aquatic life (potentially for cadmium and selenium) (Board action taken at January 14, 2016, meeting).  The proposed amendments on these itmes were published in the Virginia Register of Regulations on September 18, 2017.  The public comment period runs 9/19/17 to 11/17/17.  More information on these proposed amendments is available online at  More information on the triennial review overall is available online at

2/26/18: 10 a.m.: Department of Environmental Quality’s (DEQ) Regulatory Advisory Panel on the James River Chlorophyll Study.  At the DEQ’s Central Office 1111 East Main Street in Richmond.  The panel is assisting the DEQ on possible amendments to the existing chlorophyll-a criteria.  Part of the group’s work is to review the James River chlorophyll Science Advisory Panel’s information resulting from a five-year study.  The pertinent section in the Virginia Administrative Code is VAC 25-260-310 bb.

“Water is Life” is the Theme of the Annual SERCAP Meeting on April 11, 2018, and the Focus of the Organization’s Mission

April 11, 2018, is the date for the annual “Water is Life! Luncheon and Conference” held by the Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project, Inc., or SERCAP, located in Roanoke, Va.  For information about the annual luncheon/conference, e-mail, or contact SERCAP at 347 Campbell Avenue, Roanoke, VA 24016; phone (540) 345-1184.

The 2018 event will mark the 49th anniversary of SERCAP, whose mission is to help provide safe and adequate water and wastewater, community development, environmental health, and economic self-sufficiency to rural citizens in seven southeastern states: Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida.  SERCAP is one of six rural community assistance projects in the United States.  More information about SERCAP is available online at

For an audio take on SERCAP and its April 2017 meeting, have a listen to Virginia Water Radio Episode 366 (5-1-17) (4 min./51 sec.), online at

Water for Tomorrow photo
“Water for Tomorrow,” an influential 1988 report on water and wastewater needs by locality in Virginia, was published by the Virginia Water Project, the predecessor to SERCAP.

PBS NewsHour Hurricane Harvey Updates in January-February 2018

From January 29 through February 6, 2018, the PBS NewsHour aired three reports on recovery efforts and lessons learned in Texas five months after Hurricane Harvey struck Houston and other areas starting on August 25, 2017.

The reports are the following:
“Thousands of Texans are still in temporary housing awaiting Hurricane Harvey aid” (Jan. 29; 8 min./36 sec.);
“How decades of Houston development add up to rising flood risk” (Feb. 5; 9 min./7 sec.); and
“Can Houston prevent disaster when the next storm hits?” (Feb. 6; 8 min./20 sec.).

These reports, along with earlier NewsHour items on the storm, are available online at