By: Meghan Jensen, VP Marketing & Communications, The Water Council
In November of 2016, I had the pleasure of participating in the Great Water Cities Summit in Aarhus, Denmark presented by the Water Environment Federation (WEF) to speak about Milwaukee’s water innovation network. Aarhus, Denmark’s second largest City (and for me home of the Jensen’s), has some of the cleanest water in its canals with “top-quality drinking water and clean bathing water in the Bay of Aarhus” making the location ideal for the Summit’s discussion topic (City of Aarhus, 2017). My co-presenters Dr. Kartik Chandran from Columbia University in New York, Dr. Emanuel Grün from Emschergenossenschaft/Lippeverband in Germany, and Durk Krol, from the WSSTP – The European Platform for Water Research in Belgium, and I discussed how water-based growth can be accelerated at the local and regional levels. Below is a photo from the Summit along with a shot of the Opera House along the crystal clear water in Copenhagen that one could truly bath in.
The Summit provided leaders in the water sector the opportunity to share experiences and learn how others are attracting businesses, advancing innovation, improving the quality of life – all while linking economic growth with water in a transformative new vision where water is the engine of growth.
Prior to the Great Water Cities Summit, Jakob Andersen, Trade Counselor and Consul General for Denmark in Chicago, came to Milwaukee to meet with the City of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, and The Water Council to begin conversations on how our organizations can better connect our needs with water technology solutions and best practices. With programs such as the BREW Accelerator and Small Business Channel, Milwaukee provides a business development pathway providing companies the support and guidance to navigate each phase of business growth, and a market entry point into North America. You could consider us that “family” that young water companies need.
“I prefer to have Danish companies go to a smaller city like Milwaukee, versus the very large cities, because of the concentrated water technology support system available,” said Consul General Jakob Andersen, Consulate General of Denmark in Chicago.
On January 27, 2017 we were pleased to welcome water businesses Aquaporin, NanoNord, DHI, and Landbrug Fodevarer from Denmark through a collaborative effort with the Consulate General of Denmark – Chicago to discuss Danish industrial wastewater technologies. The Consulate General organized an Industrial Wastewater Market Visit in the Midwest with their final stop in Milwaukee at The Water Council’s Global Water Center to host a full-house session on ‘Water Optimization and Efficiency within the Food Processing Industry.’
Members of The Water Council were invited to participate in this session to discover best practices from Danish companies, and how they can be adopted here. This mutually beneficial seminar is a great example of how our network can seek new customers, partnerships, and technologies in Milwaukee’s world water hub. Partners included: Consulate General of Denmark – Chicago, Danish Agriculture and Food Council, FAB Wisconsin, Wisconsin Cheesemakers Association, Midwest Food Products Association, Madison Region Economic Partnership, Ramboll Environ, and Drip Partnership.
If you were not able to join us, a summary video of the Industrial Wastewater Market Visit to North America was created so you can hear directly from the Danish Companies and members of the Consulate General about the importance of their visit. Watch Video
We’re very much looking forward to continuing to develop our relationship with the Danish Trade Council in Chicago and businesses from Denmark. If you’re interested in engaging further with The Water Council’s global network, you might be interested in attending our upcoming conference, Water Leaders Summit 2017, May 23-24 where we’ll be discussing water security strategy.
VP, Marketing & Communications
The Water Council