Zeroing Stormwater Trash: Advances in Technology for Program Success

Date / Time:
Tuesday, Sep 15 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Track / Session:
Track: Trash / Session 4: Panel
Short Description: 

The proposed panel will explore the efforts of several entities that each have a common goal of utilizing Artificial Intelligence including optical capture and machine learning to streamline and cut costs of OVTAs to assist municipalities comply with the California Trash Amendments.

Speaker / Panelist 1:
Presentation Title: Utilizing Technology to Streamline On-land Visual Trash Assessments in California
Stephanie Castle Zinn, Fuscoe Engineering
Biography: Stephanie is a Project Manager of Water Resources at Fuscoe Engineering and has over 10 years experience in water resources engineering, stormwater regulatory requirements and sustainability. She has published two papers in scientific journals regarding groundwater depletion and human impacts on evapotranspiration in the Western US. Stephanie’s role at Fuscoe Engineering entails advancing Fuscoe’s water resources sector by designing sustainable, multi-benefit low impact development solutions for WQMPs to support improving water quality and increasing water quantity. She also works with various cities throughout Orange County to assist with compliance of stormwater regulations, such as the Statewide Trash Amendments. She has a passion for utilizing geospatial tools like GIS, Artificial Intelligence and Drones to make work products more efficient and robust. Recent projects include designing water sustainability features for winery projects throughout California and preparing compliance documentation for the Trash Amendments for the Cities of Tustin, Lake Forest and Los Alamitos, as well as Del Mar Fairgrounds. Stephanie’s enthusiasm for her work and genuine concern for California’s water resources are qualities that greatly contribute to the success and effectiveness of Fuscoe’s well-respected stormwater management team.
Speaker / Panelist 2:
Presentation Title: A Brief History and Background on On-land Visual Trash Assessment (OVTA) Protocols and Lessons Learned To-date
Chris Sommers, EOA, Inc.
Biography: Chris is a Vice President at EOA, Inc. and has over 17 years of consulting and project management experience. Chris specializes in stormwater management and assessment strategies, and is highly regarded as one of the leaders in stormwater trash management and assessment in the State of California. Having assisted numerous (>70) public agencies in successfully identifying trash sources and tailoring control measure programs to fit their unique situations, Chris has led numerous cost-benefit evaluations of trash full capture system feasibility and other trash types of controls. Chris has managed a number of innovative and foundational trash-related projects, including the San Francisco Bay Area Stormwater Trash Generation Rates project that is the foundational study used to develop baseline trash generation maps throughout the State, and the Trash BMP Toolbox that received a CASQA award for outstanding stormwater implementation project. Chris has assisted the State Water Board and the CASQA in developing guidance to municipalities on trash control measure implementation. Lastly, Chris and his team at EOA are the creators of the On-land Visual Trash Assessment (OVTA) protocols, which have been used throughout California to help demonstrate compliance with the State Water Board’s Trash Amendments.
Speaker / Panelist 3:
Presentation Title: Cloud-based Geospatial Quantification of Stormwater Trash Program Effectiveness
Gary Conley, 2NDNature
Biography: As Chief Scientist with 2NDNATURE, Gary combines expertise in hydrology, pollution dynamics, and applied math to develop science-based decision support tools used to prioritize actions and support water quality permit compliance. He began his 15 year career in the public sector at NOAA, and thus sees the value of providing better data and information to decision makers. Gary holds a BS in Earth Sciences from UC Santa Cruz and an MS in Geography/Watershed Hydrology from San Diego State University. When not in the office he is usually out surfing, falling off his bike and eating dirt, or backpacking in the mountains.
Speaker / Panelist 4:
Presentation Title: Caltrans OVTA Automation Study
Walter Yu, Caltrans
Biography: Walter Yu is a Supervising Transportation Engineer with the Caltrans Enterprise Data and Geospatial Governance Program and leads enterprise data governance implementation. He also serves as one of the technical leads for the Caltrans On-Land Visual Trash Assessment (OVTA) automation project. Walter has over 14 years of experience with Caltrans, including over 7 years in implementing its stormwater compliance program. He has a B.S. in Civil Engineering from UC Berkeley and Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Data Science from the Harvard Extension School.
Speaker / Panelist 5:
Presentation Title: Automated Trash Condition Assessments Using Machine Learning
Francesca de León, Wood Environment & Infrastructure Solutions
Biography: Francesca de León currently works as a water resources scientist for Wood, Environment and Infrastructure Inc., and has over eight years of experience in the environmental field. At Wood, Francesca works closely with different municipalities within various watersheds helping to support Water Quality Improvement Plan (WQIP) implementation and overall National Pollutant Discharge Elimination (NPDES) Permit compliance. She also participates in field monitoring, data analysis and reporting for Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) compliance, bacteria source tracking, and municipal inspection programs. More recently, Francesca has been involved in working with municipalities on implementation of the Trash Amendments including planning strategies and methods/tactics for completing Onsite Visual trash Assessments (OVTAs). Francesca received her Bachelors of Science in Biology and Environmental Science from Santa Clara University, and a Masters of Environmental Science and Management from the University of California Santa Barbara, Bren School of Environmental Science and Management.