Water 2.0 Conference: Providing Digital Solutions
I had the opportunity to participate at our Water 2.0 Conference on February 26th at NBC Headquarters, 30 Rockefeller Center in NYC.
The Water Innovations Alliance Foundation has conducted research on America's Aging Water Infrastructure.
Unfortunately, the facts are the following:
1) Many of America’s pipes are over 60 years old with extensive leakage
2) There are over 700 water main breaks in America every day
3) Estimated cost to repair U.S. water infrastructure is $365-$400 Billion
After listening to our dozen speakers, I feel optimistic in regard to solving America's water infrastructure issues.
We started and finished the day by discussing the World Economy, our American Economy, Wall Street and Main Street.
Marco Annunziata, Chief Economist for General Electric presented a positive outlook for 2013-2014. Marco told us China is not crashing, the Eurozone is not disintegrating and the U.S. is not falling off the “cliff.”
Scott Livingston, Chairman & CEO of Livingston Securities concluded the event with insight on equity markets as the Dow passed 14,000. He informed us that investment money is flowing into emerging water start-up deals. Scott said that the outlook for Wall Street in 2013 will continue to be positive.
Ralph Exton, Chief Marketing Officer, Water & Process Technologies for GE Power & Water discussed the water challenge facing a mega-city like New York. NYC uses 1.5 billion gallons per day. Ralph gave us one of the most compelling explanations of the Water-Energy Nexus I have heard to date.
Kyle Reissner, Senior Marketing Manager Automation Software for GE Intelligent Platforms talked about delivering Real-Time Operational Intelligence (RtOI) in industry, similar to what is already happening in social network (Facebook) platforms that deliver Real-time Social Intelligence (RtSI). After seeing Kyle’s presentation, it seems as if RtOI data sources could drive Water 2.0.
Amanda Brock, CEO of Water Standard gave us an eye opening presentation in regard to innovation in water treatment. Her case study was enlightening. In my 25 years of being a Conference Event Director, Amanda’s speech was one of the top presentations I have ever heard.
Terry E. Biederman, P.E., Global Industry Manager - Water for GE Intelligent Platforms provided us with a history and roadmap of Water 2.0 solutions. He has hands on experience as a former Public Utility official. Terry has seen the technology evolution in public water treatment plants.
Kudos to Ben Armstrong, CEO of WellDone and Kevin McGovern, CEO of The Water Initiative for their contributions in changing people’s lives. Both of their products solve the problem of access to fresh drinking water. Ben’s product is going to make a difference in Africa. Kevin’s product is in Mexico, producing fresh drinking water.
A special thank you to Val Nicholas, VP/Creative Director of NBC News, New York for an inspirational presentation on innovation. Val’s passion motivated all of our participants.
Lastly, I would like to thank all of the speakers including:
- Alan Hinchman, Global Marketing Director, GE
- Upmanu Lall, Professor of Engineering, Columbia University
- Laurent Auguste, CEO, Veolia Water North America
- Doug MacNair, Ph.D, Practice Leader for Natural Resource Economics for Cardno ENTRIX
- Diana A. Stavreva, PhD, Staff Scientist, LRBGE, NCI, NIH
- Richard F. Tomlinson II, FAIA, Managing Partner, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP
- Erik Hromadka, CEO, Global Water Technologies
- Timothy Kim, Senior Loan Officer, US Export-Import Bank
- Edmund Woodbury, President, McCaffery Interests, Inc.
Looking forward to our next Water 2.0 Conference on May 15th in Washington, DC.