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Sunday, December 30, 2007

O.K. Time To Stop Walking While Stupid, Please; or How I Learned To Stop Shooting Myself In The Foot Because The Limping Was Slowing Me Down Some

Mother Calhoun hopes you all had a nice holiday break from The Sewer Wars? Unfortunately, she wasn’t so lucky and has been bombarded with daily emails and cc’s of an ongoing squibble-squabble that just kept getting sillier and sillier. So, perhaps, it’s time for Mother Calhoun to say a few words?

Below, is Mr. Tom Murphy, CEO of AES & the “Reclamator.” This email made Mother Calhoun think of a Fuller Brush man coming to a potential customer’s door and saying, “If you don’t buy this really swell vegetable brush, I’ll shoot you in the kneecaps.” For some weird reason, Mother Calhoun doesn’t think that’s been proven to be a particularly successful sales ploy. And, as the New Times’ “Shredder” has pointed out, threatening to sue a bankrupt entity for big bucks . . .? Uh . . . . And threatening the good people of this community individually, based on their assessment vote, is either a very, very bad joke that went awry, or the ka-boom of a gun going off with Mr. Murphy’s foot as the unfortunate recipient of the bullet.

This email was among many emails between Murphy& Mark Low & The Water Guy. Alas, most of them just got silly, so I’m not going to post them here. They’re embarrassing. But, The Water Guy’s email below DOES lay out a procedure that can and will go a long way towards moving this all from a war of words into something somebody can actually deal with.

And, finally, Gail McPherson notes where the REAL problem and concern lie: Make sure The Process has sufficient will and onsite-expertise available to honestly evaluate any onsite plans during the due diligence phase, not simply treat onsites as “also-rans,” as in, “O.K. O.K. already, I’ve looked at your plans thank you for coming there’s the door.”

Murphy’s email:
Dear _________,

The “County Process” is already “dead”. It doesn’t matter if we are in the County process or not, the County isn’t going to be able to borrow the money to do the project. The assessments are illegal, if they attempt to asses my house, they will soon find that out. And, when the County goes to borrow money with the old “guaranteed hookup” ordnance to guarantee revenue and payback, we will just notify the lender of the RECLAMATOR at peoples homes and that such an outdated “guaranteed hookup ordnance” concept doesn’t work anymore as some properties now only have “water”, i.e. “Recycled water” which is defined in California Water Code Secton 13050 as a “Valuable Resource”. A “guaranteed hookup” doesn’t guarantee a “revenue” stream to pay for the loan. Any “required hookup” only creates a NEGATIVE REVENUE STREAM.

So, _____, how can the County pay back the money they would have to borrow to build a “non-federally compliant, non-affordable, non-sustainable, energy waster, regulatory created non-point source pollutant generator (it is already a matter of totally industry awareness that a centralized sewer waste management method is the number one source of pollution of our nation’s waters, even beats out septic tanks), and what tops it off is, even if they put the thing in, we will still be providing our service and the customers they might have will eventually disconnect from the sewer (and subscribe to our services) at some point so they can have back control of their water.

Again­­­­­_____ these guys are already dead and they just don’t want to admit it. These guys aren’t stupid, they are engineers, however, they really are slow to take up change and admit that they have lost control.

It is over for them, I’m not going to do business with the County anyway, even if they called me on Christmas day. I gave them an ultimatum and a date and they didn’t take me up on it. They are out.

Now, we are going to give the LOCSD the last opportunity to do business with us. That should be your focus now, as if they don’t, I am going to go after them for $100,000,000 in damages.

The result will be Los Osos will have to pay the award ($20,000.00 per DUE), AES will then be given the project anyway as an additional reward as the law requires it, make the typical profit it would have made anyway, the grants that I have telling everyone about will kick in to pay for the project and Los Osos still got the most affordable project while AES made an additional $100,000,000 and it only cost each homeowner $20,000,000 and not $70,000,000 per DUE.

However, I am going to exempt all who voted NO and who DIDN’T VOTE. Only the ones who protested our program and voted “yes” are going to be the ones who must pay all “reward” amounts. After all, it will only be fair, don’t ya think?

The BRIDGE is OUT! The “COUNTY PROCESS” IS NO LONGER OF ANY SIGNIFICANCE…………….

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO THE ________
Best regards,

D. Thomas Murphy
Inventor,
RECLAMATOR, “The Future of Water”
(775) 848-8800


Email from The Water Guy:


Dear Mr. Murphy:

Here is the background/data/proof of concept for the high performance biofiltration treatment concept. There are two papers attached. One provides a general review of the technology, along with some examples of its implementation and capabilities. The other explores in more detail nitrogen reduction capability of the technology. The attached tables accompany that paper.

Past experience indicates that you will immediately go after the circumstance that the high performance biofiltration concept may not produce total N concentrations of <10 mg/L. As we have discussed (and apparently disagree upon), that is not necessary in most situations. Nitrogen can be a fertilizer, a valuable resource just like the water is, if applied properly -- e.g., by dispersing treated effluent with nitrogen concentration <20 mg/L in a subsurface drip irrigation field to fertilize the landscaping as well as obtaining an irrigation benefit. There is no prohibition in the "law" against including the soil mantle in the "treatment zone". However, if it is determined that <10 mg/L out of the pipe is required under the conditions of a given circumstance, you can put a "Nitrex" filter on the end of the treatment train, problem solved. So what we have here is a not just a demonstrated "best" technology on the terms that you claim it must meet, we have a technology with a long history of--thus a well-deserved reputation for--stability, robustness, consistency and reliability, even in the face of difficult operating conditions. ESPECIALLY in the face of difficult operating conditions, such as the very lightly supervised on-lot system environment, where any number of "out of bounds" events WILL occur.

From all appearances to date, what you have is an experiment, some ideas (no pun intended) that have been strung together. While they may indeed produce a viable treatment concept, its long-term capabilities--either in terms of consistent effluent quality or in terms of basic operational reliability--remain to be demonstrated. As has been noted, your widget has failed--badly--to perform up to your claims in at least two publicly-funded, independent demonstration projects. It would appear that what you need to find is a demonstration site, your own "Washington Island". AFTER you run your widget through something like that, AFTER you identify its strengths and weaknesses, AFTER you figure out how to minimize or eliminate the "glitches" that WILL occur, THEN you could in good conscience promote your widget in a situation like Los Osos.

That is what the situation appears to be. If indeed you do have in hand the operating history and evaluation that matches in rigor to that presented for the high performance biofiltration concept, we still await you sharing it. In any case, you have been shown that there are other technological strategies that can do what you claim is the sole province of your widget.

Best regards,
David Venhuizen, P.E.Planning and Engineering as if Water and Environmental Values Matter www.venhuizen-ww.com


And McPherson’s observations: (excerpt)

The possible solutions are screened based on meeting criteria from a complete needs assessment. Then the best value options that meet the criteria are placed on the table. Is TRIW adequate to remain on the table? Can any other plans be modified to allow them to remain on the table? Based on the criteria which options and configurations of systems are left???? The rest fall away.

Because the needs assessment was limited and not well knitted together or updated from the TRI W failure, decentralized isn't on the main table.

EIR affords the final comparisons of options and technology/site configurations ...and decentralized must be here as well as Ripley plan. The flaw in the rough screening was setting artificial limits to the "solution paradigm" to centralized only. This allowed an early process failure to develop defensible "best value" project criteria. This prematurely knocked decentralized and Ripley out of the running favor of centralized only and Carollo only.

This can be corrected now and evaluations can be made complete so there is no question for the legitimacy for the process.

Gail

Let me repeat that:

“The flaw in the rough screening was setting artificial limits to the “solution paradigm” to centralized only. This allowed an early process failure to develop defensible “best value” project criteria. This prematurely knocked decentralized and Ripley [My note: also Pio Lomobardo’s decentralized cluster/water-reuse plan?] out of the running in favor of centralized only and Carollo only. This can be corrected now and evaluations can be made complete so there is no question for the legitimacy for the process.”

Meantime . . . .

. . . . This can be corrected now. . . yes, IF the citizens will make their voices heard that onsite will be evaluated by experts in onsite programs and on a level field with the other options, not simply something cursorily reviewed at the last minute as window-dressing to prop up a Process that was off kilter from day one.

Meantime, enough with Mr. Murphy & Mr. Low’s Word War 2.0. It’s simply too silly. The documentation path is clear, the test-case path is clear, the necessity of getting a definition of what “is” is, is clear, necessary data required for a fair evaluation should be clear. All of which needs to go to the county and the RWQCB. Or Mr. Murphy can head to federal court and file whatever he needs to file.

In the meantime, Mother Calhoun sez: “Threatening residents isn’t included in that list of Things To Do, Thank You.”

Have a happy New Year!

16 comments:

TCG said...

Happy New Year to Ann and the other posters.

I need to get something off my chest. I am damn tired of hearing from, and about, the AES guys.

There have invaded our lives for one purpose only, to make a big score at our expense. When they threaten to sue our local entities, they are essentially threatening to sue us.

Enough.

Mark said...

DUTY of CARE

*Los Osos Septic Tank Discharge Elimination Project

I understand the frustration expressed by tcg-, so I have cut and pasted part of an email exchange in order to help illuminate that the LOSTDEP* RECLAMATOR Solution as offered is part of a much bigger picture.

The RECLAMATOR has been in "the PROJECT mix" since August 28th., 2007 and the people of LO/BP have been dealing with the "Project" for a much longer time. Be patient we are working as hard and as fast as the "process" provides.

If everyone charged with a fiduciary duty actually carries that duty out in a time is of the essence, business-like manner there won't be any chance that lawsuits will filed against anyone in Los Osos/Baywood Park and therefore it will be a very happy New Year for the people of Los Osos and Baywood Park!

Duty of care

n. a requirement that a person act toward others and the public with the watchfulness, attention, caution and prudence that a reasonable person in the circumstances would use. If a person's actions do not meet this standard of care, then the acts are considered negligent, and any damages resulting may be claimed in a lawsuit for negligence.


Some email addresses have been redacted...

Waterguy is David Vanhuiesen

It amazes me that some of you still need to be educated over and over again. What part of this technology don't you understand? It is the solution for not only Los Osos but literally anywhere there is the need. Why are you wasting your time, not to mention Mr. Murphys? I'm sure you must have better things to do. (or not) But Mr. Murphy does. Bow out and let him do his job. There has been enough interference already that has cost the citizens of Los Osos not only millions of dollars, but a cost to the environment as well. Not to mention having to live under the stress the county has put upon them. We are approaching a new year. It is time for a change for the better. Make your resolutions. Work on those and move on. Be part of the solution, not the problem. Darlene Shaddox

----- Original Message -----
From: Tom Murphy
To: 'Waterguy' ; 'Mark Low' ; ronmcpherson@earthlink.net; 'Darlene' Strauss.Alexis@epamail.epa.gov
Cc: pio@LombardoAssociates.com
Sent: Monday, December 31, 2007 2:27 AM
Subject: RE: 'National Goal' - "Eliminate All Discharge of All Pollutants", USC 33/26


David, can you tell me how I can answer your questions in such a manner that you would accept the answers?



I have provided you with the law which requires the “best” which you can read for yourself. The “evidence” to which you refer must be the able to be determined by any engineer who understands extended aeration activated sludge biological process technology and can read the manufactures specifications for the Ultra-Filtration membrane which guarantees the permeate quality. Even though there wasn’t much about membrane technology when you got your engineering degree, there is much about the technology today which you may be able to educate yourself on. The “spiral wound” technology, apposed to the “hollow fiber” type, has ultimate 100% integrity. Besides the test data from the prototype “evidencing” its performance capability, the manufacture has published information on their website that will validate the membrane performance. The UF membrane of the RECLAMATOR only operates at 10-20% of its design capability.


I have provided you with the website which explains the advanced biological process in layman’s terms. It has a list of installations of my designed/installed projects utilizing systems from 250 gallons per day (size of a home) to commercial and industrial installations ranging beyond 1,000,000 gallons per day. All these projects which I have designed, manufactured and generally installed, many of which were turn-key, represented approximately 10% of my over 1000 turn-key designed projects, Los Osos being only “one” of. My clients have ranged from Wal-Mart to Fluor Daniel Engineering and Construction, who at the time I provided 8 systems for an entire $2 Billion Township and Newmont Mining project. David, who are you to question me or the capability of my technologies as compared to Fluor Daniel? Why are you even interested?




I have provided you with the “grade” (Ultra-Filtration) of the spiral wound membrane which, as a physical, treatment technology, provides for a “definite barrier” ensuring a 99.99% efficiency, the same level your “public drinking water supply” must meet.


I have provided you with our NSF Technology Report of 1994, which within itself, establishes the RECLAMATOR as the solution which, by law, should have been specified for Los Osos, based on third party demonstration which is recognized by the State of California, by the Water Board/County in 1994 based on that NSF Report alone.




I have provided you with the results of the first prototype of Shaddox which met the MCLG drinking water standards, a non-enforceable public health goal. I really don’t understand your question of “if the law says elimination of discharge, does the law really mean that”? Section 1362. Definitions state: “Except as otherwise provided when used in this Chapter (meaning Chapter 26)”, the term “Pollutant” is defined in USC § 1362(6) as “sewage” or “sewage sludge”. The term “Toxic Pollutant” is defined in USC § 1362(13) means “any pollutant..which..cause death, disease, behavioral abnormalities, cancer, genetic mutations, physiological malfunctions (including malfunctions in reproduction) or physical deformations, in such organisms or their offspring.” In USC § 1362(16), the term “Discharge when used without qualification includes a discharge of a pollutant or a discharge of pollutants”.


NOTE: There are two US EPA Standards which is utilized by the water and wastewater industries, mostly the water industry until lately when wastewater treatment technologies began to incorporate membrane technology, the MCL (Maximum Contaminant Levels) which define the “line” of the concentration of a pollutant in water which is considered a threat to public health, i.e. pollutant, or no longer of such a concentration which will cause a threat to public health and also allows a margin of safety, that would be the MCLG (Maximum Contaminant Level Goals), which define water that is no longer a “discharge of pollutants”, i.e. non-pollutant. The RECLAMATOR produces permeate which is below the level defined in the MCL and within the levels defined within the MCLG, it is the specification of the membrane physical filtration component.



I have explained that we don’t sell the RECLAMATOR so I really don’t need to prove it to anyone as AES remains the responsibility entity for our clients discharge and they are indemnified.


The “recycled water” the RECLAMATOR produces is dedicated to our clients exclusively, what they don’t reuse for a beneficial reuse indoors or outdoors, is dedicated by AES to remediate the aquifer through the beneficial reuse application which is defined by the US EPA as “indirect potable reuse”.




California Water Code § 13050 defines “recycled water” as a “valuable resource”. Consequently, a “required hookup” will only create a market for the “recycled water” produced by the RECLAMATOR as whoever “requires such a required hookup”, will be obligated to “purchase” the “recycled water” which belongs to whoever owns/operates the facility, also a California Law.


David, in regards to your statement that the RECLAMATOR is NOT “Decentralized”, it is about as decentralized as one can get. It is not only decentralized, but it is “DEGOVERNMENTIZED” and “INDIVIDUALIZED”.



I have been trying to tell you as well as many more, the “Bridge is Out” because the “Law and the technology which complies with the law is Unveiled”.



As for what my program is for Los Osos, you don’t even have a clue what I have in store for these AWESOME folks who have fought so hard for so long and are going to realize a VICTORY real soon. However, you will find out within the next 10 days.



I wish you and yours a prosperous and very Happy New Year!



Best regards,



D. Thomas Murphy

Inventor,

RECLAMATOR, “The Future of Water”

(775) 848-8800

AES Central Coast Discharge Elimination Company, LLC.

Founder

(805) 305-2378

Advanced Environmental Systems, Inc.

President

(775) 425-0911

www.NOwastewater.com



“Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.” ~~~Proverbs 26:12

Mike said...

I see nothing more or less than a glorified used car salesman with an over active vocabulary and gigantic ego with a plug and pray product... Invention, ha, just a salesman's dream...!!!!

Threatening to sue his potential customer base is one of the dumbest and sleaziest tactics yet...!!!!

I give thanks that the Community has seen through all the McPherson/LOCSD smoke screens and has overwelminingly voted to have the County take this responsibility to bring in a resonable waste water treatment project and not some salesman with the next greatest "invention" to save our poor misled community...

Mark said...

Mike:

The county is involved in a process.
You can thank God that the county has not taken responsibilty for the LOSTDEP Project!
Dream on...

Happy New Year!

Mark said...

I do understand the confusion and frustration as the County with permission from the WaterBoard who got their authority from the USEPA, permitted the septic tank discharges that the WaterBoard is now using NOV's and CDO' with CAO's at the ready to make you eliminate the discharges that were legally permitted.

NOV's, CDO's and CAO's are all "legal action", considered necessary.

Sometimes one must fight fire with law and technology.

Imagine when sewerage is realized to be causing pollution and the next round of "enforcement" comes to eliminate the exfiltration from that sewerage the county is considering in their process.

Enter federally compliant technology.
The RECLAMATOR is that federally compliant technology now.

It is not a used car like sewerage that the county process is "kicking"...

Jane said...

Gotta love Los Osos. First the developers and the county, with the backing of the RWQCB, cook up a plan to get a free sewer by doctoring test data and building a bunch of homes with septic systems in the perched aquifer. Then the county and the RWQCB stand back and laugh as the newly formed CSD sells out the people on a system that would never fly. Next the ousted CSD and the RWQCB decide to fine us out of existence, both individually and collectively, blaming failures on the individuals. Now AES plans to fine us out of existence if we do not accept their untested system (at least those who voted the way the RWQCB told them to vote) and if the system fails (or AES goes belly-up) the RWQCB will boot us out of our homes.

Mark said...

Re: Septic Tanks

Not “legally” permitted, “ILLEGALLY” permitted. No “septic tank discharge” has been “legally” permitted since 1977, no matter what government entity did it. They have all been “illegally” permitted by political subdivisions who had waste management authority issued from the EPA, State or Counties authorized to control waste discharges within their jurisdictions and ALLOWED by the USEPA who was commissioned by Congress to NOT ALLOW such permitting of such “discharges” to be done. See USC Sec. 1311(a) plus specified other relevant sections defined within such statute.

Stay tuned...

Churadogs said...

Jane sez:"Gotta love Los Osos. First the developers and the county, with the backing of the RWQCB, cook up a plan to get a free sewer by doctoring test data and building a bunch of homes with septic systems in the perched aquifer. Then the county and the RWQCB stand back and laugh as the newly formed CSD sells out the people on a system that would never fly. Next the ousted CSD and the RWQCB decide to fine us out of existence, both individually and collectively, blaming failures on the individuals. Now AES plans to fine us out of existence if we do not accept their untested system (at least those who voted the way the RWQCB told them to vote) and if the system fails (or AES goes belly-up) the RWQCB will boot us out of our homes."

And Mark sez:"Not “legally” permitted, “ILLEGALLY” permitted. No “septic tank discharge” has been “legally” permitted since 1977, no matter what government entity did it. They have all been “illegally” permitted by political subdivisions who had waste management authority issued from the EPA, State or Counties authorized to control waste discharges within their jurisdictions and ALLOWED by the USEPA who was commissioned by Congress to NOT ALLOW such permitting of such “discharges” to be done. See USC Sec. 1311(a) plus specified other relevant sections defined within such statute."

Well, there it is in two nutshells: Please define legally permitted. BY WHOM? Or are we once again just seeing various fingers pointing in opposite directions: don't look at US, the State's responsible. Nuh-huh, don't look at US, the Feds told us to, Nuh-HUH, did not, YOU did, did so, did not, did so, neener-neener.

Who's running this crazy farm, anyway? Who actually has the knowledge and authority to decide what the meaning of "is" is? Or is this just another political football that everyone will pass off to one another until the whole town is laid waste and destroyed, after which everyone will pull long faces and say, "Aw, Dang, that's too bad. Wink-nudge."

Mark said...

Ms. DeWitt-Moylan said:
Our country was founded, not by those who hoped that things would work out eventually, but by those who took a stand against tyranny and established a government of the people.

Ms. Ann Calhoun said:
That change will only happen if the American people wake up and start connecting some vital dots. The opportunities for profoundly beneficial change are golden and ripe and ready. But if the vision and will is missing, nothing will change. And courage, too.We need courage. Surely we’ve had enough of allowing ourselves to be frightened by lies so we can be herded like goats and fleeced like lambs?

I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them but to inform their discretion.
Thomas Jefferson

“It is the duty of the PATRIOT to protect his country from his GOVERNMENT” ---Thomas Paine

When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.
Thomas Jefferson

Churadogs (I love this handle Ann) said: Who's running this crazy farm, anyway? Answer- The People of Los Osos and Baywood Park.
The United States Code Title 33 Chapter 26/ Federal Law and Best Available Demonstrated Control Technology- sez so.

Power to the People...The United States Constitution says so.

Mark said...

It is amazing that anyone could suggest any company who had exclusive rights to a newly patented device that turns 100% of all household “sewage” into “drinkable water” in this time of drought and is mandated by federal law to be applied at every sewer pipe coming out of every building in the United States, could go “belly up”.

Damn! What does it take to gain some level of common sense from and average “Joe and Jane”?

We are about to find out...

Mark said...

The RECLAMATOR produces ultra filtration permeate to a level which meets or exceeds Drinking Water as defined http://www.epa.gov/safewater/contaminants/index.html

Mark said...

November 15, 2007
Next Year's California Budget Deficit of $10 Billion and the Most Vulnerable in Our State

The California budget crisis will grow dramatically worse by June 2008, with a total budget shortfall that will grow to over $10 billion unless there is "corrective action" taken by the State that could include proposals for major increases in revenues and massive spending cuts next year, says a report released yesterday by the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO), the non-partisan agency that reviews budget issues for the State Legislature. The full report is available through the LAO.

http://www.californiaprogressreport.com/2007/11/next_years_cali.html

In response to the growing budget crisis, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on November 5th ordered all state agencies to submit plans that call for a 10% reduction in spending that he will consider when he puts together his proposed State budget for 2008-2009 that he will submit to the Legislature on January 10th.

I wonder what the WaterBoard's plan's will be?

Talk about "fiscal responsibility" - ever wonder why States don't go belly up?
Where is the accountabilty??

Mark said...

When written in Chinese, the word "crisis" is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity.
John F. Kennedy

The Drought is the Danger.
The RECLAMATOR is the Opportunity

Mike said...

Keep talkin'... maybe you can convince someone... so far you only seem to be talking smack to yourself... With your ego you should do well with Cal Worthington....

Mike Green said...

Will he eat a bug?

Sewertoons said...

He did already - it was mixed in with his "smart pills."