Water leaders discuss innovation at Washington roundtable

March 5, 2013
The Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Association and the U.S. Water Alliance co-hosted a roundtable discussion on "Innovating for Water's Future," in Washington, DC, this week...

WASHINGTON, DC, March 5, 2013 -- The Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Association (WWEMA) and the U.S. Water Alliance (USWA) co-hosted a roundtable discussion on "Innovating for Water's Future," March 4 in Washington, D.C.

The roundtable brought together key policy makers, regulators and industry leaders to discuss ways to accelerate the development and use of new technologies and approaches to meet increasing demands for sustainable water resources.

"As budget numbers go from bad to ugly, there's real beauty in the water innovations that spring from public-private partnerships," said President Ben Grumbles, USWA. "We have common ground on the urgent need to innovate and collaborate now to sustain water and invest in America's future."

"It is imperative that our industry join together to address the barriers to innovation," added WWEMA President Dawn Kristof Champney. "Factors such as the 'low bid' mentality, inadequate reward systems for risk taking, and long payback periods prevent us from embracing technologies that can better protect and preserve our water environment."

"Innovating for Water's Future" consisted of three sessions.

1. Framing the Needs and Challenges

*Deb Lavelle, Chair, Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Association
*Rich Anderson, Senior Advisor, U.S. Conference of Mayors
*Robert Steidel, Director of Public Utilities, City of Richmond (Virginia)

2. Leveraging Existing and Exploring New Opportunities

*Nancy Stoner, Acting Assistant Administrator, Office of Water, U.S. EPA
*Suzanne van Drunick, Office of Research and Development, U.S. EPA
*Sally Gutierrez, Office of Research and Development, U.S. EPA
*Alex Dunn, Executive Director and General Counsel, Association of Clean Water Administrators
*Jim Taft, Executive Director, Association of State Drinking Water Administrators

3. Facilitated Discussion

*Brent Fewell, Vice President, Environmental Compliance, United Water and Chair of the U.S. Water Alliance's Business Advisory Council.

Since 1908, WWEMA has informed, educated and provided leadership on the issues that shape the future of the water and wastewater industry. Its member companies supply the most sophisticated leading products and technology, offering solutions to every water-related environmental problem and need facing today's society.

The U.S. Water Alliance, a national non-profit educational organization, unites people and policies for "one water" sustainability. Since its founding in 2008, the Alliance has been convening collaborations to advance integrated solutions including energy, transportation, agriculture and other sectors.

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