Symposium Encourages Innovation, Action
The leading minds in water efficiency, plumbing and mechanical technology converged in Ontario, Calif., May 11 and 12, for the Second International Emerging Technology Symposium. Co-convened by IAPMO and the World Plumbing Council, the event brought together participants from around the globe, from a wide range of fields, including engineers, policy makers, manufacturers, building officials and contractors.
Noted 'Eco-Pioneer' and interim head of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power S. David Freeman set the tone of the event with his keynote address, calling on the participants to get involved in the policy making arena.
"Your ideas are terrific, your knowledge superb. But let the world know about it," said Freeman. "We're just too damn polite. We need to open our mouths and shout because nobody is listening."
Water policy is being decided by those who don't have any knowledge about what they are talking about, scolded Freeman. Those in public office are making decisions based on public pressure, which is often misguided and based on emotion rather than coming from a place of expertise, as displayed by those in attendance.
"Truth is there is no shortage of water in Southern California. We're just using it in the most inefficient fashion," Freeman said.
Freeman's candid speech kicked off two days of intense discussion on how the water utility, manufacturing, engineering and trade industries can provide solutions through new technology and innovation.
The symposium covered all aspects of the industry. Stephanie Tanner, EPA WaterSense Program, and James Hanlon, EPA Director of the Office of Wastewater Management, were on hand to discuss policy at the Federal level.
Plumbing manufacturers from the tops brands in the industry discussed how the "green" movement was rapidly changing the industry, and discussed the evolution of rating toilets.
Other topics included grey water, FOG, rainwater, irrigation, plumbing design, water heaters, standards, policy, trap seals and water softeners.
During breaks, attendees could tour the UA's "Building a Greener Tomorrow" interactive display, a 44-foot-long mobile classroom equipped with workstations, each of which offers hands-on installation, operation and service training opportunities on state-of-the-art green building technologies.
The symposium was a follow-up to the overwhelmingly successful inaugural Emerging Technology Symposium, held in Chicago in August 2008. In his closing remarks, IAPMO Executive Director GP Russ Chaney announced that the next symposium would be held in 2012.
Videos of the event will be posted on IAPMO's YouTube Channel in the following weeks. Subscribe to our page to be notified when they are available, www.youtube.com/user/IAPMOGroup, or become our friend on facebook, www.facebook.com/IAPMO.