U.S. - China Water Quality Cooperation Program Takes Flight

Source: 
Scranton Gillette Communications

Workshop series reveals new events, assesses progress made providing solutions for Chinese agencies

More than a year into its run, the U.S.-China Water Quality Cooperation Program, sponsored by the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) and organized by Scranton Gillette Communications (SGC), publisher of Water & Wastes Digest, and BRISEA Intl., has covered a lot of ground, with more events in store. The program is intended to help provide solutions for the water quality challenges facing China’s water and wastewater industry today. The program consists of multiple workshop series that are designed to establish a forum in which the U.S. government and private industries can share information and best practices with their Chinese counterparts in an effort to assist China in improving its water quality.

In Review

Since the launch of the program in April 2009, six workshops have been completed.

The China and U.S. Clean Water Action Plan Technical Workshop, held in Wuxi in April 2010, addressed environmental monitoring in Taihu Lake, the policy framework of the U.S. Clean Water Act and municipal nutrient removal technologies. Earlier that month, the International Seminar on Water Environment Protection was held in Beijing and included keynote addresses from the China Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) titled “The Priority Areas in Chinese Water Environment Protection and Cooperation,” and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), titled “Management Initiatives, Priorities and Challenges for the EPA’s Office of Water.”

In February 2010, the Water Solutions for Wuhan event took place in Wuhan and included presentations on municipal water planning and projects, water treatment and reuse, sludge treatment and monitoring. It welcomed the U.S. Ambassador to China, 35 U.S. company representatives and 100 city and provincial water officials. In October 2009, more than 150 engineers and managers turned out for the Problem-Solutions for Chinese Wastewater Treatment Plants seminar in Suzhou, co-organized by BioChem Technologies Inc. and featuring presentations from GE, Hach, Rockwell and Severn Trent Services.

Reflecting farther back, the workshop series kicked off Aug. 17 to 19, 2009, in Beijing with the Seminar on U.S.-China Clean Water Action Plan. This inaugural event was delivered in sections titled “Water Environmental Management and Policy Experiences,” “Water Environmental Quality Standards” and “U.S. Source Water Environmental Protection.” More than 50 attendees turned out for the first event; these included officials from MEP and its research arm Policy Research Center for Environment and Economy, EPA, U.S. Embassy in China, U.S. Department of Commerce (USDOC) and the USTDA.

Looking Ahead

On Aug. 30 to 31, 2010, the workshop series heads to Huzhou, China, for the Lake Water Quality Control, Monitoring, Water Reuse and Information Systems event. Technologies will be presented to a select group of government personnel from MEP, as well as local Huzhou and Zhejiang provincial water authorities and design institutes, including chief engineers from the design institutes and procurement officers from local water utilities. The focus will lie on permitting systems and monitoring the implementation of water protection, industrial pretreatment, central and provincial government coordination and applicable technologies.

This October, the program lands in the U.S. with the Second Environmental Industries Forum – Chinese Trade Delegation. About 90 delegates, including a vice minister from the MEP, will take part, arriving in New Orleans Oct. 4 for WEFTEC.10. High-level Chinese government officials and senior executives from environmental industry firms will comprise the delegation, which will attend a one-day Environmental Industries Forum and the WEFTEC.10 show, participating in various show events in the ensuing days. The delegation will then fly to Chicago, where it will tour a number of water and wastewater facilities.

The goal of the delegation is to identify U.S. technology partners and purchase products and equipment. U.S. water and wastewater companies exhibiting at WEFTEC.10 are encouraged to meet with the delegation. Priority areas encompass a whole host of technologies, including aeration, disinfection, membrane separation, sludge treatment and handling, and groundwater remediation. Additional focus points include energy savings and increasing plant capacity.

On the U.S. end of the delegation planning, SGC and BRISEA Intl. are involved as organizers, along with the USTDA, EPA, USDOC and U.S. manufacturers. The USTDA will be represented by Regional Director Geoff Jackson; EPA is expecting Assistant Administrator Peter S. Silva from the Office of Water; and USDOC is expecting Under Secretary Francisco Sanchez.

For more information on these upcoming events, please contact SGC at hgillette@sgcmail.com or 847.391.1033.

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