Year in Review: The Most Popular Articles of 2021

Year in Review: The Most Popular Articles of 2021

As 2021 comes to a close, we’d like to take a few moments to look back on some of our readers' most popular stories this year at If you missed any of these, now is your chance to catch up. Enjoy this look back at the past year.

10. Water Sector Applauds Settlement in Wipes Litigation
An agreement between the Charleston Water System and Kimberly-Clark Corporation regarding Cottonelle flushable wipes marked an important step forward to ensure products marked "flushable" don't damage sewer systems.

9. Surge in Nitrogen Has Turned Sargassum Into the World's Largest Algal Bloom
Recent research suggest that increased nitrogen availability from natural and human sources, such as sewage, is supporting blooms of Sargassum and turning a critical nursery habitat into harmful algal blooms.

8. Handling an Employee Resignation You Didn’t See Coming
When an employee announces their resignation, it can leave you feeling blindsided. What’s the right way to respond? How can you ensure this employee’s duties are covered without overburdening the other members of your team? Find out in this online article.

7. Can You Require Employees to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?
With all the uncertainty swirling around COVID-19, one thing readers were interested in during 2020 was whether employers are allowed to require their employees to get vaccinated.

6. President Biden Introduces Major Water Infrastructure Investment Plan
President Joe Biden’s infrastructure investment proposal was a hot topic this year. This article announced his introduction of the American Jobs Plan, which later spun off into the $1.2 trillion bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

5. Exam Study Guide: Settleometer Tests and Public Notification Requirements
Our Exam Study Guide series remains popular with readers, and the most widely read of those posts was about conducting sludge settleometer tests on the wastewater side. The drinking water side included a question about events that trigger public notifications.

4. Hacker Tries to Poison a Florida City's Water Supply Via Remote-Access System
Experts have been warning for years that hackers would begin waging cyberattacks on municipal water supplies, and the wake-up call for our industry arrived when a hacker used remote-access software to take control of an operator’s computer at a water treatment facility in Oldsmar, Florida.

3. Bug of the Month: Nematodes and Wastewater Treatment Plants
The Bug of the Month series is another popular one with TPO readers. Among those posts, the most widely read in 2020 was about nematodes, a metazoan that is commonly found in wastewater treatment processes in small numbers.

2. 5 Tips for Acing Wastewater Exam Math Questions
We reintroduced this article originally published in 2014 and it proves to be as well-liked as it was seven years ago. It offers five tips you can use to ace your math questions and pass your operator exam.

1. Vote to Support the First Sewer-Themed LEGO Design
The most popular article of the year was about a designer who was looking for support for the first-ever sewer-themed fan design on the LEGO IDEAS platform. It pays tribute to water/wastewater workers by starring two sewerage technicians as the set’s main protagonists. The images of the set are worth checking out!


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