Ground Water Canada

Takeaways from World Water-Tech summit

November 14, 2017  By Ground Water Canada

Left to right: Kevin Bossy, CEO and founder of Bishop Water Technologies; Rhonda Harris, vice-president at Tata and Howard Inc.; Michael Chan, Ontario minister of international trade; Rick VanSant, director of WaterTAP; and Peter Gallant, president and CEO of WaterTAP. Photo courtesy World Water-Tech

Nov. 14, 2017, Toronto – The World Water-Tech North America Summit welcomed senior representatives from public and private water utilities, corporate investors, engineering and technology companies for two days of networking and decision-making on water innovation Nov. 2-3.

More than 250 delegates attended the summit to debate the successes and challenges of the water industry with regards to investment opportunities, optimizing energy usage and recovery, building resilience, and monetizing efficiencies through data and the Internet of Things.

Key takeaways of the summit highlighted flooding as the new drought, along with a thought-provoking panel on how utilities such as San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, Aqua America and Hampton Roads Sanitation District are effectively reducing the severity and disruption of weather extremes, said a news release from Rethink Events, co-host of the event with WaterTAP Ontario.


When the conversation turned to water reuse, it became clear that larger commercial buildings provide an opportunity for reuse but face obstacles. Decision-makers also urged that public education was required to make potable reuse a reality in the future.

Delegates also pushed for a move towards “data-as-a-service” as opposed to “software-as-a-service” with utilities calling for quality over quantity when it came to data collection. 

Leading water industry figures such as Ontario’s minister of international trade, Michael Chan, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Water’s D. Lee Forsgren, both addressed their water policy and infrastructure plans as a means to accelerating innovation.

Jennie Moss, founder of Rethink Events, said: “There has never been a greater need to bring together the industry’s brightest minds to pave the way for a more resilient future in the water industry. We have been organising this summit for five years and it’s always a wonderful experience seeing decision makers implementing brand new objectives and creating successful partnerships.”

Rethink Events will host the World Water-Tech Innovation Summit in London, England, on Feb. 20-21, 2018.

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