PWQA Annual Convention Recap
By PWQA staff
The theme of the Pacific Water Quality Association’s 57th Convention and Trade Show in October again this year was sustainability. Nothing could be more timely and appropriate than to be well informed on where we are, where we are going and how we are going to get there, as it applies to water usage and conservation in times of drought. “Sustainability is the art of knowing what to do today in order to survive tomorrow.”
Approximately 400 attendees, 61 exhibitors and three VIPs (Senator Joel Anderson, Alex Armedariz of Assemblyman Rocky Chavez’s office and Gail Ramer from Assemblyman Brian Jones’ Office walked the trade show floor to learn more about the industry) took part in the annual conference. Attendees were met with an abundance of activities, including the golf tournament, educational seminars, a charity raffle and much more.
Education and sustainability
Education topics helped everyone to appreciate how to use less and reuse more in order to stretch meager water resources. Use less water, use less salt, use less energy. And all the while, PWQA members must ponder: “Whatcha gonna do when the well runs dry?” Four presentations were specifically focused on sustainability, how to achieve it and how it affects the bottom line.
Are we running out of water? (C.F. ‘Chubb’ Michaud CWSVI, Systematix Company) Where does our local water come from and how is it used? Are we really in danger of running out of water? What are the biggest concerns about our water supply? Residential water usage only accounts for about one percent of the water supply, while agricultural needs are as much as 90 percent. Michaud took a look at how water is used and how much is necessary to sustain our needs for growth and sustainability. How does California weigh in against other states in water usage and requirements?
Conserving water without inconvenience. (Greg Reyneke CWS-VI, Red Fox Advisors) It’s cool to conserve. Optimizing water treatment equipment efficiency and first-tier water reuse options are the keys to minimizing the hydrological footprint. Reyneke reviewed numerous water-saving facts and techniques and presented some real-world examples with a detailed data analysis on water reuse and discussion of regulations and best practices. It was good information dealers can use to keep their customers informed and increase business. Being water wise is just plain smart.
Variable frequency drive pumps. (Clifford Fasnacht CWS-VI, Pacific Purification, Inc.) Variable frequency drive (VFD) pumps are an integral part of many water treatment systems today. Why is that so important? What are they and how do they work? Are they right for you? How will they save your customer money and make you money at the same time? Fasnacht gave an indepth presentation that described their importance for specific applications and covered potential energy savings. It’s all a part of sustainability.
Softener efficiency: yesterday, today and tomorrow. (Michael Mecca, Performance Water Products) Water softeners have been with us for over 100 years. Wow, we’ve come a long way, Baby! Today’s ultra-high efficiency systems are leading the way for reduced brine discharge and water use reduction. Mecca discussed the history and the impact of continuously improving salt efficiency, all the way from the ‘salt-in-head’ models of the early 1900s to the ultimate zero-discharge trends of the future. Lowering brine discharge numbers makes reclaimed water more usable and contributes to sustainability.
Business, of course
New board members were elected during the convention to lead the association throughout the 2014–2015 year. They included Clifford Fasnacht, President; Ken Stetiz, Vice President; John Miller, Secretary/Treasurer and John Foley, Past President. Additional board members included Melodie Bullock, Don Pajarito, Greg Reyneke, Jackie McCaleb, C.R. Hall, Martin Jessen, Tracy Strahl, Jerry Horner, Frank DeSilva, Mike Mecca, Jay Hellenbrand, Ron Ruef, C.F. ‘Chubb’ Michaud and Joyce Takeda. In addition, the PWQA Special Service Award was presented to Clack Corporation and TST Water for hosting the PWQA BBQ’s last spring and summer, and Ron Ruef was honored with the PWQA Marino Pomares Award for his leadership in the field of public relations.
Forty intrepid golfers took part in the annual golf tournament, which was held at Riverwalk. The ‘ball-drop’ winner was Jimmy Foley (son of John Foley), who recently transferred to UCI and was purchasing books when his dad called to tell him he won. He was so happy! Tournament winners included Andrew Knoll (Longest drive–men); Peggy Blazek (Longest drive–women) and Janell Cedarstrom (Closest to the pin). Overall winners were John Foley, Marty Jessen, Peter Pak and Jay Hellenbrand on the first-place team and the Superior Water Team (Ted Carlisi, John Rowean, Joe Carlisi and Craig Blanke) took second-place honors. Congratulations to everyone for a tournament well-played!
Industry defense fundraising
PWQA asked exhibitors to donate items for an opportunity raffle benefiting its Industry Defense Fund and close to $3,000 was raised! Items donated included a gift-card tree; assorted wine; Cheetah wine and accessories; a silver and turquoise bracelet; an Icoffee maker; Michael Kors purse and wallet; Tiffany champagne glasses with a bottle of champagne; three 2015 WQA conference packages; a country wine basket and a Kindle Fire.
Legislative and governmental affairs
A panel that included Frank DeSilva, Mike Mecca, David Loveday and WQA/PWQA Lobbyist Pete Conaty spoke on legislative and governmental issues concerning the industry, including 2013-2014 legislative bills, the drought, the upcoming water bond, upcoming elections, the state drinking water program being transferred from the CDPH to the State Water Resources Control Board, upcoming lobby days in Sacramento and WQA’s new regulatory database. The special guest speaker was Senator Joel Andersen, who gave a very informative presentation on what is happening in Sacramento. Anderson also presented State of California Senate Certificates of Recognition for exceptional service to each member of the Association’s Board of Directors (and staff) for their commitment to provide all consumers equal access to quality water options for home, business consumers and commercial water treatment.
PWQA is at the forefront of supporting the water treatment industry. Its efforts to promote the industry while protecting it from onerous legislation continues to be the best representation of companies that membership can provide. To that end, PWQA maintains a full calendar of events to meet the needs of the membership and the industry. Be sure to watch for details of the next annual convention!