Summit 2019 


Tuscany Suites & Casino
February 28 - March 1, 2019


Presentations from the 2018 National Summit are linked below for your viewing.  Past Summit presentations can be located at this link.

Warning: Some of these files are large, and may take an extended period to download on slow internet connections!


MSSC 2018 Conference

Manage the Feast, Feed the Famine
Las Vegas, NV
February 8-9, 2018


Opening Remarks & Preview

Ernesto Avila, P.E. Avila & Associates Consulting Engineers, Inc., Program Director, Multi-State Salinity Coalition, Northern California Salinity Coalition

Opening Keynote Presentation

  • Dr. Robert Mace, President and Chairman of the Board, Multi-State Salinity Coalition, Chief Water Policy Officer, Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, Texas State University “The Future of Salinity and Water in Texas (and the Southwest?)”

Concentrate & Salinity Management Session Part 1
Desalination of brackish groundwater and seawater are technically viable approaches to developing drought resilient water supply projects.  Management of the concentrate generated during the desalting process can become a barrier to the overall success of the project.  This panel session will provide an overview of various desalination projects and how the concentrate is being managed.  In some cases, salts are being removed from the concentrate to create additional water supply.

Moderator: Scott Reinert, Hydrogeologist, Water Resources Manager, El Paso Water 


  • Brent Alspach, Principal Environmental Engineer, Arcadis, “Water Quality Considerations for Integrating Desalinated Seawater from the Carlsbad SWRO Plant into Existing Regional Supplies”
  • Guillermo G. Delgado, Water and Wastewater Process Leader, H2O Terra, CERRO, Concentrate Enhanced Recovery Reverse Osmosis”
  • Robert McCandless, Membrane Technology Specialist, Brown and Caldwell, “NF-RO System”
  • Lanaya Voelz, Client Service Manager, CDM Smith, “EMWD’s Purified Water Replenishment Program”

Concentrate & Salinity Management Session Part 2
Effective salinity management typically results in complex programs, particularly when carried out in inland areas. Planning and implementing sustainable strategies for mitigating water and soil degradation from concentrate disposal is an important aspect of these programs.  This session will provide information on salinity management programs that are in the planning stage for implementation or are currently in operation.

Moderator: Karl Longley, Professor Emeritus, California Water Institute, California State University, Fresno 


  • Jim Prairie, Hydraulic Engineer, Bureau of Reclamation Upper Colorado Region, “Salinity Economic Impact Model (SEIM)”
  • David Ruhl, Program Manager, Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority, SAWPA, Brine Disposal in the Santa Ana Watershed
  • Richard Meyerhoff, Senior Water Quality Specialist, GEI Consultants, Inc., “Preliminary Plans for Brine Concentration and Disposal for CV-SALTS”
  • Brandon Yallaly, Vice President, Carollo Engineers, Inc. “Chino II Concentrate Reduction Facility”

Special Recognition & Luncheon

Moderator: Dr. Robert Mace, President, Multi State Salinity Coalition, Chief Water Policy Officer, Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, Texas State University

  • Diamond Contributor: Jack Simes, Department of Interior, Bureau of Reclamation
  • Platinum Sponsor: John Shomacher & Associates, Inc.
  • Platinum Sponsor: El Paso Water
  • Platinum Sponsor: Eastern Municipal Water District
  • Platinum Sponsor: Water Research Foundation
  • "Salt of the Earth Award"
  • Student Scholarship Award
  • Keynote Luncheon Speaker:
    Making Every Drop Count.  Full Recovery Desalination – The Story of How EWM Developed the Concept and the Challenges of Implementing the First Project.
    J. Hubble Hausman, CEO, Enviro Water Minerals Company, EWM, “Update on El Paso’s Enhanced Recovery / Concentrate Processing Plant”

Revenue Stability Session

Water purveyors have had to address the challenges of providing a reliable water supply during the most extreme of climactic events that have impacted southwestern agencies in modern history.  These impacts have included dealing with reduced supplies, increased salinity in source water, inconsistent inflows and higher treatment and distribution costs.  For most agencies, these realities represent the new “normal” when it comes to water supply planning. Often overlooked is the long-term impact that this shift has had on the other aspect of reliable water supply and service: long-term fiscal soundness.  This session discusses what long-term and near-term approaches and opportunities exist to mitigate this potential and real fiscal drought.

Moderator:  Ernesto Avila, P.E. Avila & Associates Consulting Engineers, Inc., Program Director, Multi-State Salinity Coalition, Northern California Salinity Coalition


  • Paul Jones, General Manager.  Eastern Municipal Water District, “Water Shortage Contingency Plan During the California Drought and the Use of “Allocation Based Tiered Rates”
  • Amanda Erath, Program Analyst, Bureau of Reclamation, “Denver Policy Office Reclamation's WaterSMART Title XVI and WINN Act Funding Opportunities”
  • Joe Olsen, General Manager, Metro Domestic Water Improvement District, "Ten Steps to Revenue Stability: How One Water Provider Brought Clarity to an Uncertain Future."

Break & Demo

  • Eric Dole, PE, Hazen and Sawyer, “Electro-Distillation Demonstration Using “Salt Miner” Technology on Spent Water Softener Brine”

Eric will demonstrate the patented “Salt Miner” technology electro-distilling spent brine from the Tuscany Inn commercial water softener.  The live demo will show how the technology distills the 80,000 mg/L – 120,000 mg/L TDS spent brine (that typically discharges directly to the local sewer) at 30% to 60% the energy than traditional thermal distillation.  The salt slurry is evacuated from the unit and stored in a bucket where it can be properly disposed and potentially reused.  The distilled water can be reused elsewhere in the house or discharged to the sewer.

Watershed Strategies Session

A watershed approach to salinity management encapsulates a broad range of strategies and issues. It is a recognition that all water supplies are interconnected as aptly described by the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority’s “One Water, One Watershed”, a nationally recognized watershed approach to salinity management in Southern California. For this session, the impacts of drought conditions on water supplies as the “new normal” for the southwest watersheds of the U.S. will be examined. Water resource planners are now recognizing long term droughts are negatively impacting water recycling regulatory compliance and the ability to meet salinity permits. New permits extending over longer hydrologic cycles to account for drought, climate change and salinity fluctuations are being evaluated. For many watersheds that are dependent on groundwater as a significant source of water supply, droughts are impacting groundwater levels, recharge functions and pumping which in turn affect subsurface movement of salinity and contaminant plumes. 21st century groundwater modeling methods and tracking these trends will also be explored in this session.

Moderator/Speaker: Mark Norton, Water Resources & Planning Mgr., Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority DOWNLOAD PRESENTATION


  • Steve Finch Jr., V.P., Principal Hydrogeologist-Geochemist, John Shomaker Associates Inc., “Ground Water Modeling”
  • Scott Reinert, Hydrogeologist, Water Resources Manager, El Paso Water, & Brian Klaes, Vice President - Project Manager, Moreno Cardenas Inc. “Aquifer Recharge”
  • Joe, LeClaire, Senior Professional II, Daniel B. Stephens & Associates, Inc. “Evaluation of Long-Term Trends and Variations in the Average Total Dissolved Solids Concentrations in Wastewater and Recycled Water”
  • Bruce Lytle, President, Lytle Water Solutions. “Numerical and Visual Tracking of Ground Water Flow and Contaminant Movement Using 3D Geologic Modeling.”

International Session
Droughts, global warming, salinity control have no boarders. Many countries around the globe are facing similar challenges that we are facing in the US. To allow learning how salinity challenges are addressed in the different parts of the world, the group of internationally recognized experts will share their global experience.

Moderator: Mark Holmes, Water Resources Manager, City of Goodyear, AZ


  • Jim Lozier, Vice President and Global Technologist, CH2M, Singapore’s Investment in Potable Reuse and Seawater Desalination to Solve Their Water Supply Challenges 
  • Sharon Megdal, Professor/Specialist, Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science, University of Arizona, "Israel Plant and Issues”
  • John Tonner, CCO & EVP, and Ignacio (Iñaki) Del Campo, Director of Engineering, CONSOLIDATED WATER CO. LTD. “Strategic Diversification of Baja California’s Water Supply Portfolio and the role of the Western Hemisphere’s Largest Desalination Project”


Keynote Session - Florentine AB“Slowly, yet persistently over the past 40 plus years, federal agencies and state partners along with hundreds of private canal companies and several thousand individual producers have worked tirelessly to reduce the salt load in the Colorado River.  This billion dollar effort, in conformance with Clean Water Act requirements, has now reduced the annual salt load in the Colorado River by 1.33 million tons, improved the downstream water quality by a little more than 100 mg/L and reduced the commiserate damages to downstream water users by about $300 million annually.  However, salinity levels and associated quantified damages are projected to increases above the current $450 million dollar annual level unless the program continues to be aggressively implemented.”

  • Don A. Barnett, Executive Director, Colorado River Basin Salinity Control Forum, “The Meal Goes Further on a Low-Salt Diet

Legislative Session

Federal Direction in Desal Policy Development, Legislation, Research and Project Funding

Moderator: John O’Donnell, Senior Partner, Murray, Montgomery & O’Donnell


  • J. Tom Ray, P.E., D-WRE, Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam
  • Rob Renner, PE, BCEE, Chief Executive Officer, Water Research Foundation
  • Paul Kelley, Acting Executive Director, Association of California Water Agencies
  • Hector Gonzalez, Government Affairs Manager, El Paso Water, Legislative Policy and funding related to federal water supply projects (Bureau of Reclamation, Defense, EPA)

Water Reuse/Recycling Session
 - Florentine AB
Hear from this panel of distinguished water reuse experts discussing the current state of potable reuse. Learn how direct potable reuse went from an option utilities hesitated to consider to a must have water supply option in water portfolios across the country.  The story behind potable reuse for each of these southwestern states will be discussed, leaving the audience with an understanding of each states policies, challenges, successes, and what's in store for the future.

Moderator/Speaker: Gilbert Trejo, Chief Technical Officer, El Paso Water


  • John Enloe, Director, Natural Resources Truckee Meadows Water Authority
  • Paul Jones, Board of Trustee, WateReuse, California
  • Robert McCandless, WateReuse Arizona Vice-President
  • Dr. Eva Sheinle-Darling, WateReuse Texas Vice-President

Closing Remarks, Summary & Adjourn