SERDP and ESTCP are pleased to announce that two SERDP and ESTCP-funded projects have been recognized for environmental engineering and science excellence by the American Academy of Environmental Engineers and Scientists (AAEES). Since 1989, AAEES has recognized those projects judged to represent the best of environmental engineering and science in nine categories: research, planning, design, operations/management, university research, small projects, small firms, environmental sustainability, and industrial waste management. The winners of the Excellence in Environmental Engineering and Science competition are then eligible to compete in the International Water Association’s Global Project Innovation Awards (PIA).

Biological Treatment of Nitrate & Perchlorate for Drinking Water Production

Selected for the Grand Prize in the Research category, this project led by Dr. Patrick J. Evans at CDM Smith was initiated under ESTCP and has focused on the development of a membrane biofilm reactor to treat groundwater contaminated with nitrate and perchlorate that can also produce potable water. The demonstration project was conducted in Southern California at the pilot scale, and was able to successfully demonstrate 94% removal of perchlorate and 99% removal of nitrate, while meeting U.S. EPA Safe Drinking Water requirements. This project was completed in 2013, and detailed reports on the demonstration results are available at the project website. In addition, the research team recently completed an online seminar, which provides a thorough overview of the demonstration. We congratulate Dr. Evans and the entire team on receiving this well-deserved award.

Gene Probe to Determine the Feasibility & Assess the Performance of Monitored Natural Attenuation for Dioxane Plumes

Selected for the Honor Award in the University Research category, this project led by Dr. Pedro Alvarez at Rice University was initiated under SERDP as part of the SERDP Exploratory Development (SEED) program in which innovative approaches that entail high technical risk or require supporting data to provide proof of concept are funded for approximately one year. The research team was able to demonstrate that dioxane degraders are widespread at contaminated sites. In addition, results from microcosm experiments demonstrated that dioxane degradation activity in microcosms correlates with gene biomarker concentrations, and that the concentration of catabolic biomarkers increases when dioxane is consumed due to growth of specific degraders. Additional information about this project is available at the project website. We congratulate Dr. Alvarez and his team on receiving this award.

Finally, we also would like to congratulate Dr. Perry McCarty on his selection as the recipient of the Gordon Maskew Fair Award. Dr. McCarty was a long time member of the SERDP Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) and his contributions to SERDP as a member of the SAB were invaluable. We’re pleased to see him recognized for this prestigious award.