2011 Discovery Conference

Details to come, Winter 2011

Recent Conferences:

2010 Discovery Conference
Date: Thursday, April 22, 2010.
Location: Olympia Resort, Oconomowoc

Download Event and Registration Flyer

Event PDFs:


Event Information:

Registration / Continental Breakfast
7:30 AM to 8:30 AM

8:30 AM to 8:40 AM

Keynote: Water: Milwaukee’s Goldmine
8:40 AM to 9:40 AM

Richard A. Meeusen, Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer, Badger Meter, Inc.

Mr. Meeusen will discuss the world water situation and the efforts of the Milwaukee 7 Water Council to help transform Southeastern Wisconsin into the “Silicon Valley of Water Technology.”

Session No. 1: Water Resources Planning In SE

9:40 AM to 10:40 AM

Michael G. Hahn, P.E, Chief Environmental Engineer, Southeastern WI Regional Planning Commission

This presentation will provide an overview of the recommendations of the recently-completed regional water quality management plan update for the greater Milwaukee watersheds, including the Kinnickinnic, Menomonee, Milwaukee, and Root River watersheds, the Oak Creek watershed, the Milwaukee Harbor estuary, and the nearshore Lake Michigan area. The ongoing implementation process will be described. The presentation will also address the regional water supply planning program, including background conditions in southeastern Wisconsin relating to groundwater and surface water sources and issues. A summary of the plan year 2035 alternative water supply plan components considered and evaluated will be provided along with the elements included in the preliminary recommended water supply plan. The groundwater impacts and related environmental considerations leading up to selecting the preliminary recommended plan will be presented.

Morning Break
10:40 AM to 11:00 AM

Session No. 2: The Great Lakes Water Resource Compact
11:00 AM to 12:00

Edward F. Glatfelter, Water Conservation Program Director Alliance for the Great Lakes

Mr. Glatfelter will present a discussion about: why there is a Great Lakes Water Resources Compact; its two primary purposes: prohibiting diversions and water conservation; the limited exceptions to no diversions; how the exceptions apply to New Berlin and Waukesha; how the diversion prohibition could apply far from the major lakes; the status of Compact implementation in Wisconsin, including: why rules and regulations for process and water conservation are not in place and why Wisconsin DNR is proceeding without them.

12:00 to 12:30 PM
Lunch Speakers: Continuing Education & WI
Licensure Law Changes
12:30 PM to 1:30 PM

Brad B. Volker, P.E., Cooper Engineering
& Glen Schwalbach, P.E., Energy Consultant

Mr. Volker will provide an update on the new mandatory requirements for continuing education (AB 187 & WI Act 47). Mr. Schwalbach will discuss licensure law changes for registered engineers in the State of Wisconsin.

Session No. 3: Case Studies: City of New Berlin &
City of Waukesha Lake Michigan Water Diversions

1:45 PM to 2:45 PM

Steven H. Schultz, P.E., Dept. Head Water Supply & Wastewater Treatment
Ruekert Mielke, Inc.
& Daniel S. Duchniak, General Manager
City of Waukesha Water Utility

Case Study: New Berlin’s Straddling Community Diversion. This case study will focus on the 10 year process New Berlin went through to address their water supply issues. Much has been publicized regarding Radium in drinking water in New Berlin, but the issue has it’s roots in other water quantity and quality concerns as well. During the process, obstacle after obstacle required the City to reevaluate their approach to their issues while at the same time dealing with regional and international politics, socio-economics, and engineering challenges. While engineering is often straightforward, the ancillary issues can often affect the outcome of sound engineering judgment. The interconnection of these issues and how they were resolved is the basis for the case study.

Case Study: Dan Duchniak will discuss the City of Waukesha’s draft application to the DNR to become the first community outside of the Great Lakes Basin to request a diversion of water out of the basin.

Session No. 4: The Aquatic Invasive Species
Partnership in Wisconsin

2:45 PM to 3:45 PM

Robert Wakeman, Aquatic Invasive Species Statewide Coordinator Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources

Bob Wakeman has recently become the Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. His earlier positions as a Water Resource Manager, Lake Management Specialist, and Aquatic Habitat Coordinator enable Bob to draw from a broad spectrum of experiences to guide the growth of this statewide program. Bob is a strong proponent of partnerships in managing environmental issues. Without assistance from the public, local governments, consultants and environmental organizations the protection of our states water resources from aquatic invasive species will be nearly impossible. Awareness is critical and Bob looks for opportunities to provide information on aquatic invasive species to a wide spectrum of audiences.

Description: The Aquatic Invasive Species Partnership in Wisconsin is multi-layered. It utilizes education, enforcement, grants and a growing body of science both biological and marketing to achieve a change in people’s behavior. This presentation will introduce you to the AIS Partnership in Wisconsin, recent initiatives and past successes.

Afternoon Break
3:45 PM to 4:00 PM

WSPE State Meeting
4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

All members are invited to attend the WSPE Annual Meeting. Your input and feedback are important to the future of this organization. Please join us.

Past President’s Reception
5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Cash Bar with Complimentary Hors d’oeuvres

2009 Discovery Conference

"Energy for Tomorrow”

Date: Thursday, April 23, 2009
Location: Tundra Lodge, Green Bay

Recap by Michael Lefebvre, P.E., 2009 Discovery Conference Chair

For those members and guests, who were able to attend the 2009 Discovery Conference, I sincerely hope that you found the conference worthwhile. When one is involved with the planning and development of a conference such as this, there is always a concern that the presentations would be of interest and that the individual speakers would be capable of holding the attention of the attendees. From my personal standpoint, I was pleasantly surprised with all of the presentations. Not only was the subject matter current and of great interest, the presenters were passionate about their subject matter and gave exceptional presentations. We were extremely lucky to have the high level of presenters that we did for each of the sessions. If you were unable to attend, you missed a great conference.

On behalf of WSPE, I would like to recognize and thank the individual speakers and their organizations for the personal time, effort and cost they each contributed to make this a great conference:

John Baldus, State of Wisconsin Office of Energy Independence
Dr. Steve Slater, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center
Dan Bartel, P.E., Electric Power Research Institute
Steven J. Daavettila, Wisconsin Public Service Corporation
David D. Donovan, Xcel Energy

I would also like to recognize the sponsors and exhibitors for the conference. First of all, I would like to recognize the Wisconsin Public Service Corporation for not only its cash donation of $1000 but also its donation of "Green" energy during the conference. Secondly, I would like to recognize both Marquette University and UW-Platteville for their donations in support of the conference. And finally, I would like to thank Northeast Wisconsin Technical College and Milwaukee School of Engineering for their financial support and providing exhibits at the conference.

Speaker Presentations (Microsoft PowerPoint)

Governor Doyle’s 25x25 Energy Goals – John Baldus, State of Wisconsin Office of Energy Independence
Next Generation Biofuels – Steve Slater, PhD., Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center
Overview of Wisconsin’s Efforts in the Bioplastic and Composites Industry – John Baldus, State of Wisconsin Office of Energy Independence
The Power to Reduce CO2 Emissions, The Full Portfolio – Dan Bartel, Electric Power Research Institute
Biomass Gasification Project at Bay Front Generating Plant – David Donovan, Xcel Energy

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