4 priority research projects the SMC is initiating in 2020-2021

The SMC Steering Committee unanimously approved initiating four new research projects for fiscal year 2020-2021 at its June 2, 2020 meeting.

Each of these four SMC projects is identified as a priority in the SMC’s 2019-2024 Research Agenda.

  • Human Fecal Indicators and Health Risk (Project 2.4): This project will compare the performance of multiple indicators of human fecal contamination, including HF183, to identify the candidate that most reliably and accurately correlates to human health risk. The project is intended to enable managers to start using a human-specific indicator as a viable alternative to fecal indicator bacteria.
  • BMP Regional Monitoring (Project 3.4): This project will develop a regional BMP monitoring program to cost-effectively and rapidly collect the data necessary to help optimize the design, operation and maintenance of BMPs across the region. The study will generate robust, statistically relevant data sets covering a range of BMP types, serving multiple land uses, across a spectrum of operating conditions.
  • Streamlined Annual Reporting (Project 4.2): This project will create guidance for a more streamlined, insightful approach to producing annual reports for regulatory compliance requirements. The goal is to make the reports more relevant for management decision-making by prioritizing critical information, while improving the “understandability” and accessibility of data.
  • Laboratory Intercalibration (Project 6.5): This project will build on previously conducted laboratory intercalibration studies that assessed data comparability among 11 analytical laboratories that conduct chemical analyses on urban runoff samples. The new study will include additional laboratories and intercalibrate on additional chemical constituents, and pave the way for direct integration of the study’s Laboratory Guidance Manual into routine monitoring programs.

Also at the June 2 meeting, the Steering Committee authorized a budget of $427,000 to support these four projects in fiscal year 2020-2021.

During its deliberations, Steering Committee members expressed support for pursuing a fifth project that would develop a strategy and a workplan for evaluating the performance effectiveness of nonstructural BMPs such as public education and street sweeping. The Steering Committee will revisit moving forward with this priority project in the next fiscal year.

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