Increasing urgency for water solutions

By Dean Amhaus, President & CEO

Increasingly, it seems there are daily news stories depicting weather-related disasters, from the troubling fires in Canada and Hawaii to the extreme heat in America’s South to the devastating floods in Asia. My heart goes out to the people who have lost loved ones or suffered physical and economic loss.

The question often asked is whether this is the new normal for our world. Time will tell, but there is no question that change is rapidly underway. It is also certain that we must act today with a sense of urgency. Just as many individual water drops create wonderful water bodies, to truly succeed we must all do our part in addressing water issues. Every day we at The Water Council work at doing our small part in making a difference.

Our staff is working especially hard right now on a variety of water initiatives. In fact we have so many events coming up that I’m listing them here for your convenience. You can read more about each of these activities in the rest of the newsletter. Remember, you can always find out what The Water Council is up to on our events page.

water leaders summit

We recently announced the agenda for our Water Leaders Summit, and I am so proud of the diverse and exceptional lineup of knowledgeable panelists we’ve put together. This year’s event, Sept. 13 and 14 at the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee, includes many fresh faces and a couple of popular returning guests. We once again welcome author Charles Fishman as our moderator leading discussions related to “Building Water Resilience.”

With less than a month to go, it’s time to register and make your travel plans. We can’t wait to see you in Milwaukee! Our thanks to presenting sponsors A. O. Smith Corporation, Badger Meter and Watts Water Technologies. Click here to learn more and register.

asian development bank roadshow

The day after the summit, we are hosting an event with the U.S. Commercial Service – Wisconsin on behalf of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The ADB envisions a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty in the region.

This event is an excellent opportunity for companies to learn more about the procurement process and current opportunities at the bank in the water and energy sectors. In particular, I look forward to hearing directly from one company that has taken full advantage of these resources to successfully expand its business across southeast Asia. The event will feature Ambassador Chantale Wong, U.S. executive director of the ADB, and Ellie Collinson, deputy director and chief operating officer of the U.S. Trade & Development Agency.

If your company is interested in expanding exports in Asia, I highly recommend attending this event. By the way, contact us for a special pricing code if you plan on attending the Water Leaders Summit and the ADB Roadshow.

resiliency innovation engine

Work continues at a rapid pace on our Resiliency Innovation Engine, funded by a Development Award from the National Science Foundation. The Water Council and a growing list of partners are leading an effort to establish Wisconsin and northern Illinois as a hub for water and energy resiliency for manufacturers and utilities.

This Associated Press story illustrates a major issue our engine is looking to help solve: the need for resiliency among drinking water and wastewater treatment plants facing rising flood risks due to climate change. That’s just one of the water- and energy-related threats facing manufacturers and utilities in a changing environment.

Wisconsin and Illinois residents can learn more by attending one of our upcoming informational sessions:

Last month, we held our first informational session before a packed house at TitletownTech in Green Bay, hosted by New North. We are grateful for the support of our partners and roadshow hosts!

innovation update

The Water Council will launch the 11th round of our Tech Challenge on Sept. 1. This session will include two topics focused on PFAS and one related to infrastructure:

  1. Destruction and treatment of PFAS in drinking water at facility or point-of-use scale
  2. PFAS detection in drinking water at facility or point-of-use scale
  3. Non-destructive structural analysis of pressurized pipes

In addition, we will also be launching a request for information (RFI) for the Green Lakes Association seeking effective and proven technologies, materials, systems or engineered solutions for addressing excessive phosphorus loading.

More information about the Tech Challenge and RFI will be on our website soon. Applications are due Nov. 6. Contact Karen Frost with questions.

water stewardship

Another month, another new WAVE client. This time it’s Bradley Corporation that’s assessing its water uses, impacts and risks; creating a corporate water stewardship policy; and prioritizing sites with the highest potential for water-related impact. Bradley joins companies such as Ecolab, Toyota Motor North America, BlueTriton Brands and more in this program.

Do you want to learn more about creating accessible and impactful water stewardship? Join our Sept. 6 webinar. You’ll hear from two WAVE participants, Toyota and KPMG, and our independent verification partner, SCS Global Services.

new members

This month, we welcome the Wisconsin Technology Council as a new member. They are also a core partner with us on the NSF Resiliency Engine and an important government liaison and economic catalyst in the state of Wisconsin. If you’re not yet a member, contact Laura Mullen to learn more about the benefits.

member news & opportunities