The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI) announced on February 26, 2015 that the Grand Bend Area Wastewater Treatment Facility, located in Ontario on the shoreline of Lake Huron, earned the Envision® sustainable infrastructure rating system’s Platinum award. This project is the first ISI Envision verification in Canada, and first wastewater facility to be ISI Envision-verified in North America.

Key sustainable features include:

  • a constructed wetland to support native wildlife species and further buffer treated effluent,
  • flexible design that makes the facility responsive to changing sewage flows,
  • reduced construction and operational costs through a focus on efficiency,
  • constructing the project within the boundaries of the original facility’s footprint to protect prime farmland, and
  • trails and interpretive signage to encourage community visitors.

More information about the project can be found on ISI's website:



Will the Closed Loop Fund assist municipalities in increasing recycling rates?  The Closed Loop Fund, launched last year, will invest $100 million over the next five years in 0% interest loans to municipalities to develop local recycling infrastructure.  The Fund will link companies that want more recycled material in their supply chains to municipalities that need low-cost capital to invest in recycling infrastructure, enabling consumer access to recycling where and when it is needed. The Closed Loop Fund will provide investment for the following types of projects: carts (e.g., single stream), trucks (for collection of recycling and organics), Material Recovery Facilities (MRF), upgrades to MRF’s, secondary processing facilities, and emerging technologies. I think the Closed Loop Fund is a bold and innovative step to elevating industry-wide collaboration and may succeed in driving the market if complementary regulations are in place.  For businesses to make investments in domestic recycling infrastructure, feedstock security must be in place. But buyers of scrap plastics, for example, lack a reliable domestic market consistent in volume and quality, and collectors, producers and recyclers of scrap plastics can’t generate sufficient value to cover their costs.

What do you think of the Closed Loop Fund and its ability to develop new recycling markets?

Submitted by:

Michael Simpson P.E
Acting Principal Environmental Engineer
Industrial Waste Management Division


“I am pleased to announce the addition of Daryl Grigsby, Public Works Director, San Luis Obispo, CA  and Stephane Larocque, SVP, Impact Infrastructure, Toronto, ON to our Center Leadership Team.  Both bring valuable experience to the Center and will help us in further expanding the tools, resources, and knowledge that will make our public works professionals more successful in their efforts to create sustainable communities, ” reported Center for Sustainability Chair Jen Winter.


“Daryl Grigsby has over 32 years of experience in the public works profession and, as a current Public Works Director, can assist the Center in considering leadership, management and implementation issues in sustainability.  He has a diverse public works background, experienced in water, wastewater, transportation and, as public works director for several cities.  He has been involved in sustainable projects such as creating a “Master Bike Plan” for the City of Pomona, CA.   Daryl served as a former national Director for APWA and he continues his passion to be involved in issues that will advance the future of our communities and of the public works profession.  We are fortunate to have such a well-rounded and experienced public works director on the Center Leadership team.


We also are enthused to welcome Stephane Larocque will expand the expertise of our Center Leadership with his extensive background in the field of triple-bottom line economic analysis, which reflects the environmental, social and financial impacts of all manner of infrastructure investment.  Stephane was also one of the original pioneers in the development of the Sustainable Return on Investment (SROI) Framework and will bring a focus on the economics of sustainability to our Leadership Group,” Winter added.


Since its creation in 2009, the APWA Center for Sustainability’s goal has been to serve as a primary resource for APWA’s members regarding sustainability and sustainable practices in public works.  The Center Leadership consists of twelve APWA members from the US and Canada who serve a two year term and whose expertise covers a diverse variety of public works disciplines.

The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI) announced that the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works in California has become the first government agency in the nation to credential 100 of its personnel as Envision™ Sustainability Professionals.
Following the successful completion of ISI’s Envision training and exam, the new Sustainability Professionals (ENV SP), mostly civil engineers, are now able to implement sustainability ideas and practices and document accomplishments in projects in conformance with the Envision rating system.
Public Works Director Gail Farber said the accreditation is a significant milestone in L.A. County’s continued commitment to sustainability.
“We continue to be a national leader in rethinking civil infrastructure and promoting sustainable projects, programs, and services,” Farber said. “Investing in sustainability is mission critical to preserve the long-term health and well-being of the environment and the communities we serve”.
The Department’s commitment was recognized recently when its Sun Valley Watershed Multi-Benefit Project achieved an Envision Platinum Award from ISI – the highest level attainable in the Envision system.
The Envision sustainable infrastructure rating system provides a holistic framework for evaluating and rating the community or social, environmental, and economic benefits of all types of infrastructure projects and measures sustainability through five categories: Quality of Life, Leadership, Natural World, Resource Allocation, and Climate and Risk.
“Each ENV SP works as an integral part of a project team with civil engineers, environmental engineers, infrastructure planners, construction managers, architects, transportation professionals, public policy leaders, public works professionals, and other stakeholders to achieve the highest level of sustainability for their infrastructure projects,” said ISI President and CEO, Bill Bertera.
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