This fall, the water and wastewater industry will focus on Dallas as the Water Environment Federation’s 79th Annual Technical Exhibition & Conference (WEFTEC.06) makes the city its home from Oct. 21 to 25.
Recently, WWD spoke with WEF President J. Michael Read about the event, which he described as one of the largest shows in the world dedicated to water quality.
WWD: How many attendees are expected at WEFTEC.06?
J. Michael Read: As the largest water quality event in North America, WEFTEC draws thousands of water and wastewater professionals from around the world each year. More than 16,000 attendees are expected to attend WEFTEC.06 in Dallas from Oct. 21 to 25.
WWD: What type of numbers are you looking at when it comes to exhibitors and booth spaces?
Read: WEFTEC is one of the largest gatherings of water and wastewater products and services in the world and will feature the latest, cutting-edge water technologies and services on its massive show floor. The WEFTEC.06 exhibition has an impressive 75% retention rate of returning companies, many of which reserved space at the onsite sales office of WEFTEC.05 in Washington, D.C.
As of mid-June, 821 new and returning exhibitors reserved a record-setting 232,620 net sq ft of floor space. However, new companies are added each week, so those numbers are expected to increase by the show’s opening in late October.
WWD: What are some of the highlights of WEFTEC.06?
Read: WEFTEC.06 offers the best water quality education and training available today. In addition to the exhibit floor and high-quality technical program of 94 technical sessions and 25 workshops, the conference will also feature several special events and programs.
Of particular note is the Water is Life, and Infrastructure Makes it Happen event on Tuesday morning. Pilot utilities and WEF MA pacesetters will share first-hand accounts of their experiences and progress over the past year, and attendees can learn more about how to take this valuable public education program back to their own communities.
Also available for the first time at WEFTEC.06 is the new Utility Partnership Program. WEF recognizes that utility employees are at the forefront of the water quality industry and is working with utilities to customize a registration package that allows for the maximum number of employees to attend WEFTEC and participate in the show’s unparalleled educational opportunities.
WWD: What does WEFTEC.06 offer attendees as a means to distinguish itself from other national meetings?
Read: Water quality is a very broad area of environmental interest and practice. WEFTEC offers a broad-based opportunity to learn about all aspects of the water environment from water supply, to water quality, to watershed management, to utility management.
The WEFTEC exhibition is likely the largest show dedicated only to water quality in the world. Visitors to WEFTEC.06 will experience technical learning opportunities that cover this broad spectrum of practice and a chance to see first-hand the latest technologies available to address water quality challenges.
WWD: Have any facility tours been planned, and if so, where will they take place?
Read: There are a total of eight facility tours planned for WEFTEC.06. All tours are scheduled to take place in the Dallas metropolitan area, including the city of Dallas’ Southside Wastewater Treatment Plant, Trinity River Authority of Texas’ Denton Creek Regional Wastewater System and the Texas Motor Speedway.
A complete list of tours, along with other conference details, can be found at our website (www.weftec.org).
WWD: Briefly, can you tell WWD readers about WEFTEC.07?
Read: WEFTEC.07 is scheduled to be held at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, Calif., Oct. 13 to 17, 2007.