Green Buildings Lead with LEED Features

LEED logoBy Chris Rundall, PE, LEED AP & Jeremy Beard, PE, LEED AP O+M

Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) has been applied to more than 7,000 projects in the United States and 30 countries1).  From its simple beginnings in 1994, LEED has evolved into the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) comprehensive rating system.

Even with so much momentum, LEED certification takes a back seat to more popular energy concepts ...

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Key to Dewatering – Save Money by being Proactive

By Baseline Water/Wastewater Engineering

waste-waterWater/wastewater treatment is an ongoing, high priority in Colorado and there’s no shortage of news about it—especially with discharge regulations getting tighter.  Remember the controversy about the strict standards for arsenic levels CDOT encountered on its highway improvement project at I-25 and West Alameda?  A similar issue happened to RTD on its excavation for an underground bus station at Denver’s Union Station.  In both situations, these ...

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Lessons Learned about Low-impact Development

By Noah Nemmers, PE

civil-engineeringLow-impact development (LID) is a term used to describe a land planning and engineering design approach to managing storm water runoff. LID emphasizes conservation and use of on-site natural features to protect water quality. This approach implements engineered small-scale hydrologic controls to replicate the pre-development hydrologic regime of watersheds through infiltrating, filtering, storing, evaporating, and detaining runoff close to its source.

Baseline has been involved in numerous stormwater management projects that utilize LID techniques over the last decade. Here are some of the things the company has ...

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Fracking and Water Usage

By Rick Behning, PE

One of the concerns related to the fracking process is water usage.  Kenneth Carlson, co-director of the Colorado Energy-Water Consortium, was interviewed for a recent Greeley Tribune article.  The article explains that 0.1 percent of water diverted for beneficial use will be used for fracking over the 5 year span from 2010 to 2015.

Based on water usage, it turns out the new horizontal wells are more efficient ...

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Colorado’s Stringent Floodplain Rules

By Rick Behning, PE

In an effort to increase public safety and reduce flood losses across the state, the Colorado Water Conservation Board issued new floodplain rules and regulations that became effective on January 14, 2011.  These rules build off the FEMA rules.  The hope is to provide uniform standards for regulatory floodplains in Colorado and activities in those floodplains.

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What to Do with Fracking’s Flowback Water?

By Baseline Water/Wastewater Engineering

energyApproximately one million gallons of “flowback” water return to the surface, and is typically hauled to a disposal site where it is injected thousands of feet into the ground, a process environmentalists and some residents of oil fields worry may contaminate ground water.  Many agree that this practice is not sustainable and are considering it to be the next 800 lb. gorilla that the EPA will be addressing.  ...

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How to Invest for Potential Fracking Regulation

energyThe following article was published on www.bakkenoil.org on January 23, 2012.

Michael Filloon of Seeking Alpha has a five-part article series on investing for potential of EPA regulation of fracking as a result of public concerns about water usage and contamination. Below is a synopsis of his excellent analysis, but for an in-depth assessment of how to invest, be sure to read his series.

Hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” is an industry practice ...

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U.S. Water Infrastructure Receives Nearly Failing Grade

By John McLain, PE

The Water Innovations Alliance (WIA) recently completed an assessment of the state of the U.S. water infrastructure, which was given an overall grade of D- by the American Society of Civil Engineers in its most recent infrastructure report card.

Underlying that nearly failing grade, WIA produced some startling statistics in a recent newsletter (not yet posted to their website):

  • More ...
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Colorado’s Current Snowpack and Reservoir Storage

By Chris Rundall, PE

 In the state of Colorado, where our offices are headquartered, there is constant concern over snowpack levels and reservoir fill.  Because snowfall in the Rockies provides the main source of water for the state’s reservoirs, we keep a close eye on annual percentages and averages. Currently, the statewide snow pack is well below where we were last year at this time.  According to the Natural Resources Conservation ...

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