Good Article on our Lake Ketchum Restoration Project

Aquatechnex has an ongoing contract to support the Snohomish County Surface Water Management Department in the Restoration of Lake Ketchum.  This lake just north of Seattle and Everett has been classified as one of the most degraded lakes in the state and was suffering from regular toxic algae blooms.  Aquatechnex was selected as the most qualified respondent to two RFP’s to restore the lake using phosphorus sequestering technologies.  Through treatments performed in 2014, 2015 and 2016, the data shows the lake is on it’s way to recovery.

Click on this link to view the complete story http://snohomishcountywa.gov/2451/Lake-Ketchum-Restoration

Excellent New Video of our Canyon Lake Phosphorus Mitigation Project

The Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority has developed a short video that highlights our Alum Treatment Project at Canyon Lake, you can view that at this address.  Canyon Lake Alum Treatment Video

Washington Department of Ecology is accepting comments on New NPDES Permit

Aquatic weed and toxic algae control is governed in Washington State through an NPDES permit.  This permit renews every five years or so.  The public has until December 18th to submit comments on this document for their consideration.  This is a very easy thing to do, first go to this link http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/wq/pesticides/final_pesticide_permits/aquatic_plants/aquatic_plant_permit_index.html

Once you are there, you can download and read the permit, the best one to obtain is the “Red Line Comparison Draft Permit” because it shows what was removed from the previous one and what was added.

We have the following concerns and would hope you would consider supporting these points through comments yourself, the same page has a electronic submission system on the same page as the link above.

Our first concern is the new requirement that the applicator return to the lake and remove the signed Ecology requires be posted.  This is something that will add between $500 and $1,000 to the cost of completing noxious aquatic weed control for the clients that require these services.  There should be an exception that the sponsor organization or the homeowners we work for can remove these signs.

This permit keeps one of the primary tools we have to fight toxic algae blooms as experimental when it is completely operational world wide.  Phoslock is a technology that was developed 25 years ago by the Australian National Science Academy.  It sequesters phosphorus with a nontoxic technology and that lowers the carrying capacity for a lake or pond to develop toxic algae blooms.  The alternatives that are allowed are Alum buffered with Sodium Aluminate, this blend can be extremely toxic to fish and there have been two major fish kills from the introduction of these technologies to Washington Lakes in the past few years.  This has occurred when the buffer Sodium Aluminate is added to the mix.  This compound is extremely dangerous to handle.  There are over 20 published papers in peer reviewed scientific journals that support the operational use of this technology, it should be considered operational so there are alternatives to the more toxic technologies to turn back phosphorus pollution.

In the past decades, Sonar aquatic herbicide has been used to effectively eradicate the invasive aquatic weed Eurasian Milfoil using a whole lake treatment scenario.  This practice would effectively be banned by this permit.  The laws in Washington State prohibit actions that would impair the control of noxious aquatic weeds and not having access to this technology where appropriate would impair Eurasian Milfoil Control Efforts.  In addition, there has been one infestation of Hydrilla in Washington State and that infestation was eradicated using whole lake treatment technology.  If Hydrilla returns, and as a Class A noxious weed its eradication is mandated, this permit will limit the ability to attack this plant.

Please give this some thought and consider posting comments.

Canyon Lake Phosphorus Project is Deemed Successful

This article appeared in the local Newspaper summarizing the work we have been doing at Canyon Lake.  This project is helping them deal with TMDL limits on Phosphorus in the lake.  http://www.pe.com/articles/lake-781410-water-authority.html

New T.R.U.E Aquatic Herbicide Delivery System

Introduction

For a number of decades it has been understood that weighted drop hoses are one of the better ways to deliver liquid aquatic herbicides within the water column. The key to a successful treatment is to understand the concentration exposure time relationship for the herbicide selected and the target plant, and then to deliver it in a fashion that enhances uniform delivery and exposure within the weed beds. The University of Florida and applicators in that region developed the concept of weighted hoses about 30 years ago.

Littline Technology

One of the issues with weighted hose delivery systems has always been that the deeper the treatment site, the harder it is to keep the hoses down there. Treating water depths up to 15 feet with conventional weighted hose technology is no problem. The problem occurs when the target weed beds are in 15-25 feet of water.

Herbicide and dye injected deep in treatment zone

Herbicide and dye injected deep in treatment zone

One solution to this problem was the development of the Littline approximately one decade ago. This technology uses a very long hose dragged behind the application boat, this additional length of hose and the weight of the hose overcame the issues with treating weed plots in excess of 15 foot water depths. It does however present some challenges to uniform delivery of herbicides within the water column.

 

The Littline system relies on 2 long hoses with a small spray tip on the end of the line. If you view the Two Hose System diagram shown here, you will see that the entire herbicide load for the entire horizontal and vertical cross section of water are placed in two lines near the bottom of the lake about the size of a dime. This means that at the point of delivery, the herbicide rate in the water is very high and the dynamic of dilution is required to spread the herbicide both vertically and horizontally in the water column to obtain a uniform exposure.

Two hose system places entire herbicide load for large cross section of treatment zone in two dime sized lines deep in the plot

Two hose system places entire herbicide load for large cross section of treatment zone in two dime sized lines deep in the plot

This doesn’t always happen and is variable at best in terms of uniformity of herbicide concentration in the target weed beds. There can be zones in the treatment area with very high rates of herbicide and zones with low rates of herbicide causing an uneven concentration and exposure rate throughout the target zone. This can impact the efficacy of the application.

 

 

 

Aerial shot of large Littline Treatment, note striping of control and no control zones, probably due to poor herbicide distribution vertically and horizontally in the water column

Aerial shot of large Littline Treatment, note striping of control and no control zones, probably due to poor herbicide distribution vertically and horizontally in the water column

The T.R.U.E. System

The Target Rate Uniform Exposure or TRUE Aquatic Herbicide Application System improves upon this concept of delivering and maintaining a concentration and exposure time of an aquatic herbicide within the weed bed.

The TRUE system consists of two large herbicide storage tanks, a GPS controlled herbicide flow system for precision application and from six to eight drop hoses with variable depth herbicide discharge points.

The TRUE system places herbicide uniformly horizontally and vertically within the water column insuring concentration and exposure time is achieved

The TRUE system places herbicide uniformly horizontally and vertically within the water column insuring concentration and exposure time is achieved

This diagram shows the concept of using micro tips. Instead of discharging the entire herbicide load for the entire cross section of water through two dime sized tips near the lake bottom, the TRUE system has from 24 to 36 (depending on configuration) discharge points uniformly placed within the treatment cross section profile. This allows for uniform placement of the targeted application rate throughout the horizontal and vertical profile. The herbicide only has to dilute from 1 to 2 feet before it overlaps with the adjacent injection point as opposed to up to 20 feet with the two hose system.

This technology is the next logical step in the evolution of aquatic herbicide application technology. It insures that the applicator can comply with NPDES requirement of delivery the herbicide with the Best Available Technology (BET). It insures better control with the herbicide applied because of the improved delivery. It also results in being able to deliver control with less herbicide, there can be savings of up to $200.00 per treated acre vs. a two hose system.

 
 

 

 

The Management Trust selects Aquatechnex as Trusted Partner

The Management Trust is a leading national community association management firm that specializes in serving condo associations and homeowner associations across the United States. With a combined 150 years experience, we are committed to providing the very best customer service to those that work with them.

Trusted Partners is a risk management and sales development product designed to provide our community association clients with the highest level of professional management services. The Management Trust only admits the very best vendors as Trusted Partners, vendors who value workmanship and professionalism above their bottom line.  The impact of this program has been readily apparent to our clients and vendors alike, and promises to be a key tool for building and maintaining great communities well into the future.

New Herbicide Application Technology Helps Comply with NPDES

Limiting the number of hoses and deliver points means that the herbicide load has to dilute quite some distance within the weed column to be effective

Limiting the number of hoses and deliver points means that the herbicide load has to dilute quite some distance within the weed column to be effective

The advent of the NPDES permit program brings with it a need to deliver the control necessary while looking for ways to advance technology to do more with less herbicide.  This has been a key mission of aquatic applicators and Aquatechnex has developed a breakthrough technology in this regard.

The Targeted Rate Uniform Exposure (TRUE) application system allows us to deliver liquid aquatic herbicides within the portion of the water column (the weed column) infested with target invasive aquatic weeds.

In recent years longer trailing hose systems have helped to better deliver herbicides in deeper water plant communities.  The one drawback of that system however is that using 2 hoses the entire herbicide load for a large cross section of the weed column is placed in two small lines about the size of a dime, the herbicide then has to dilute up to 10 feet vertically and 15 feet horizontally.  This can lead to un-uniform herbicide distribution within the weed zone, and can necessitate the need to apply more herbicide than necessary.

The TRUE system utilizes microjet technology at from 18 to 25 injection points within the weed column to delivery uniform herbicide rapidly

The TRUE system utilizes microjet technology at from 18 to 25 injection points within the weed column to delivery uniform herbicide rapidly

The TRUE system utilized 6 long drop hoses with TEEJET Microjet technology.  Smaller herbicide orifices are spaced at two foot intervals along each drop hose.  This allows the herbicide to be placed in the water column through 18 to 24 individual microjets.  As establishing a uniform rate within the weed bed is critical, this system helps by placing the herbicide both vertically and horizontally at significantly more locations.  The herbicide only has to move 1 to 2 feet before it overlaps with the next jet and the weed column is rapidly filled with the correct rate.  This provides the capability to reduce the amount of herbicide placed in the weed column while still delivering the uniform exposure required for control.

EPA is Closing in on Ruling Puddles are Navigable Waters, NPDES permits required

The EPA is very close to issuing a rule that would reclassify navigable waters of the US down to ditches and puddles.  While protecting water quality is a critical mission, this will subject property owners to a number of new laws, regulations and fees.  For example, a backyard pond now exempt from regulation under the Clean Water Act would now require an NPDES permit for the home owner to treat aquatic weed or algae, something that costs up to $2000.00 for the permit annually.  It also subjects all of these waters to citizen lawsuits, anyone can sue them for any action they think impacts water quality.  This is regulatory overreach and has the potential to have a significant impact on all.  Please review this and talk to your representatives.

Thank you for your consideration, http://ditchtherule.fb.org/

New EPA Maps show areas that would now be required to get $2,000 permits

The US EPA is attempting to classify a number of new waterbodies as “Waters of the United States”.  Many of these are manmade lakes and systems that don’t currently need an NPDES permit to control aquatic weed and algae growth.  If this goes forward the cost of permits will probably outstrip the cost of treatments.  Give a read and keep up to date on this.  http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/08/27/blueprint-for-water-control-pol-says-epa-secretly-created-maps-for-new/

Aquatechnex Sponsors US EPA Algae Bloom Photo Contest

Algae infested water

Toxic Algae Bloom in Washington Lake

The North American Lake Management Society and the US Environmental Protection Agency have contracted with the National Environmental Education Foundation to grow awareness of the issues caused by excessive nutrient loading of our nation’s waterways.  Phosphorus loading in recent years has triggered toxic cyanobacteria blooms in almost every state and there have been some significant impacts.  This month, the water supply of 400,000 people in Toledo, OH was interrupted because of the presence of blue green algae toxins in the delivered water from Lake Erie.

In an effort to grow awareness of this problem and have some fun, the Algae Bloom Photo Contest will run from August 20th through September 30th, 2014.  The rules and method of submission can be found at http://neefusa.org/algalbloomcontest

Aquatechnex has provided the NIKON D5300 camera through NALMS as a donation that will go to the winning photographer in this contest effort.

Aquatechnex is one of the leading providers of algae management solutions in the Western United States.  There are a number of articles on this page that highlight the work we do including recent treatments to target HAB in reservoirs that feed Los Angeles (http://www.stewardsofwater.com/a-day-in-the-life-of-sepro-preferred-applicator-aquatechnex/) and phosphorus mitigation technologies including Phoslock.  Additionally, information on toxic algae and algae alerts can be seen at http://www.stewardsofwater.com/h2o/

Go to this site to learn more about the photo contest and algae blooms

Go to this site to learn more about the photo contest and algae blooms