WEFTEC.08: Windy City Wrap-Up

Nov. 20, 2008

About the author: The WWD Editorial Staff can be reached at 847.391.1000 or by e-mail at [email protected].


Brisk fall weather greeted more than 21,950 attendees—the largest group in WEFTEC history— who came to WEFTEC.08 this year. Additionally, more than 1,100 companies used 290,000 net sq ft of exhibit space, breaking last year’s record as well.

The focus of this year’s show seemed to be “green” initiatives—in particular, technology that promotes energy efficiency. With energy costs expected to rise and become the largest expense in a utility’s budget, these trends are expected to be a driving factor behind future technology.

ITT Partners with Mercy Corps to Provide Emergency Relief

On Monday, Oct. 20, ITT Corp. announced a strategic partnership with Mercy Corps as part of its corporate philanthropy program, ITT Watermark. The partnership includes a three-year, $1-million commitment to help provide safe water during emergencies created by natural catastrophes such as floods, droughts and earthquakes.

Through this new partnership, ITT, a global leader in the transport and treatment of water, will support Mercy Corps’ relief and recovery efforts, which include the provision of dewatering and water purification equipment. In addition, ITT will aid Mercy Corps’ on-the-ground staff with rebuilding and recovery of water and sanitation infrastructure long after disaster strikes. Mercy Corps, a global relief and development agency, collaborates with the United Nations to implement water and sanitation solutions during worldwide disasters.

Mayor Daley Delivers Keynote Address

In a room packed with WEFTEC attendees, Mayor Richard M. Daley of Chicago culminated a special session on infrastructure and sustainability on Monday, Oct. 20 with an overview of how the city of Chicago has been an active environmental leader.

Daley highlighted some of the city’s environmental initiatives, such as the recently unveiled Chicago Climate Action Plan as well as the Great Lakes Compact, the Deep Tunnel Project and the Green Alleys Program. He also stressed the importance of replacing the city’s aging infrastructure, which is reaching the end of its lifespan.

Furthermore, the city of Chicago is enacting a new storm water ordinance that encourages developers to use green building techniques to manage storm water on site, as well as water conservation efforts that encourage residents to conserve water with opportunities such as the rain barrel program.

Texas Team Wins Operations Challenge 2008

The Trinity River Authority CReWSers captured the first-place trophy during the WEFTEC.08 Operations Challenge competition.

Coached by Raudel Juarez, the team of Jacob Burwell, Dale Burrow, Steve Price and David Brown defeated 42 teams from the U.S., Canada and Argentina to take top honors during the fast-paced, two-day event.

Celebrating its 21st year, Operations Challenge has grown from an original 22-team event to its current 43-team, two-division format. Winners are determined by a weighted point system for five events including collection systems, laboratory, process control, maintenance and safety.

CH2M HILL’s Senior VP Receives WEF Award

CH2M HILL’s chief technology officer, Glen T. Daigger, received the esteemed Eddy Wastewater Principles/Processes Medal from the Water Environment Federation (WEF) during WEFTEC.08, marking the third time that Daigger, also the company’s senior vice president, will receive the award.

Daigger, along with fellow authors Craig D. Adams and Holley Kaempfer Steller, were recognized for their article, “Diffusion of Oxygen through Activated Sludge Flocs: Experimental Measurement, Modeling, and Implications for Simultaneous Nitrification and Denitrification,” which was published in the April 2007 issue of Water Environment Research.

Uniquely Chicago

Attendees had the opportunity to participate in workshops, plant tours and projects that were unique to the city.

Attendees toured the Romeoville, Ill., wastewater treatment plant. The tour highlighted approximately $25 million worth of upgrades to both the north and south plants, including a new influent screen building, a raw sewage pump station, two new clarifiers, four new aeration basins, ultraviolet disinfection processes and more.

An exciting green project was the “Getting out of the Gutter” community service project, a collaboration between WEF, Chicago’s Center for Neighborhood Technology and the Illinois Water Environment Association Student Activities Committee. The outcome of the project will be the construction of rain gardens in Chicago’s Pulaski Park, which will help prevent storm water from entering the wastewater collection systems.

Bord na Móna Introduces New Wastewater Technologies

Bord na Móna Environmental Products U.S., Inc., the American market subsidiary of the $550-million Bord na Móna group based in Dublin, Ireland, introduced three new wastewater treatment solutions and new odor/VOC control technologies at the show.

The new MÓNASHELL biofiltration system is a sustainable, low-operating-cost alternative to traditional carbon adsorption or chemical scrubbing. The reuse of waste shells as media maintains a neutral pH, allowing for highly effective biological treatment of odorous sulfur compounds in wastewater and industrial airstreams without the use of chemicals.

Meet the Editors

The WWD editorial and sales teams hosted their annual Meet the Editors event on Monday, Oct. 20, drawing a large crowd to the WWD exhibition booth.

Industry professionals enjoyed refreshments and hors d’oeuvres while catching up with the WWD team. We thank everyone who attended for making this an always-fun and enjoyable event.

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