Water Conditioning & Purification Magazine

Global Spotlight

Sunday, March 15th, 2020

North America
Lead content maximum lowered
The joint committee governing the American National Standards for drinking water treatment units recently lowered the maximum allowable concentration of lead in treated drinking water to five ppb or less—a 50-percent drop from the previous 10 ppb—and a threshold that matches Health Canada’s new maximum allowable concentration level. The new lead pass/fail criteria has been published for NSF/ANSI 53: Drinking Water Treatment Units – Health Effects and NSF/ANSI 58: Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Treatment Systems. Updates to both standards were published in December and are effective immediately for any new filter or filtration device claiming to reduce lead.

Groundwater Foundation helping with private wells
The Groundwater Foundation announced it has kicked off its year-long effort to drill water wells for low-income families across the US who lack access to clean water. On February 4, drilling began on a new water-well system for the Saleh family in Crete, IL. Last year, the Groundwater Foundation donated $100,000 (USD) to the Water Well Trust to fund a program that pays for the initial cost of drilling a well. Participating families are given a 20-year, one-percent interest loan.

US EPA funds SRFs
US EPA announced the availability of $2.7 billion (USD) for State Revolving Funds (SRFs), which assists states, tribes and territories with infrastructure projects that help protect surface water and provide safe drinking water to communities across the country. The 2020 annual allocation for the four US EPA Region 7 states is: Iowa – $38.95 million; Kansas – $27.13 million; Missouri – $63.46 million and Nebraska – $19.12 million.

Xylem, Waterboys helping with wells
A rural Virginia family, displaced from their home after their water well failed, received the gift of clean water through the first project of Hometown H2O, a domestic water program aimed at bringing education and access to clean and sustainable water to people and communities in need across the US. Hometown H2O is an extension of The Chris Long Foundation’s Waterboys initiative and the result of a partnership announced in December 2019 with Xylem Inc.

Solar water technology honored
GivePower received the first-place Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Water Award for its Solar Water Farm technology. The containerized, solar-powered water desalination and purification technology can be rapidly deployed in coastal regions around the world suffering from a shortage of clean water.

IUVA technology award winner named
The International Ultraviolet Association (IUVA) inaugural 2020 Emerging Technology Award has been bestowed on the Oasis International QUASAR system, a UV-C LED system for point-of-dispense disinfection. This type of treatment ensures the beverage water is getting the right amount of disinfection with no opportunity to become infected at another point and prevents outlet-sourced contamination or bacteria growing up the pipeline from the point of use.

WFC to address coronavirus
The recent outbreak of novel coronavirus, also known as 2019-nCoV, has caused a worldwide concern about a potential pandemic. On January 30, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the new coronavirus outbreak as a global health emergency. Wallace Leung, Chair of World Filtration Congress 13 and past Chair Professor of Innovative Products & Technologies in Mechanical Engineering at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, will deliver a timely presentation at the upcoming World Filtration Congress on filtration innovations and technologies designed to fight the spread of viruses.

Water technology takes top CES honors
The WaterSwitch® smart-home, whole-house, water management system was named CES 2020 Product of the Year at the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, NV. The system will identify and quantify any leak in the plumbing system. The technology is protected by two US patents, as well as 11 international and additional US patents pending, and is US EPA WaterSense-approved.

Pool drain cover standard updated
The Pool & Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA) announced the publication of its updated ANSI/APSP/ICC-16 2017 American National Standard for Suction Outlet Fitting Assemblies (SOFA) for Use in Pools, Spas and Hot Tubs, approved by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). This approval was originally published in the Federal Register on May 24, 2019 (Vol. 84, No. 101) and will go into effect on November 24, the 18-month deadline specified by the PHTA-16 Standard Writing Committee (SWC), which includes CPSC staff representation.

WinSupply news
Winsupply Inc. announced it has has closed on the purchase of Morgan Brothers Supply, Inc., a plumbing wholesale distributor primarily serving central and northern Florida. Details of the asset purchase were not disclosed. Morgan Brothers Supply was founded in 1980 and has grown rapidly to seven locations and nearly 120 employees to serve plumbing contractors and general contractors, developers, homeowners and correctional institutions. The company has six plumbing showrooms. Arnold Hardy, previously Sales Manager at Morgan Brothers, becomes President of the company, which will continue to do business as Morgan Brothers Supply. Winsupply Inc. recently celebrated the grand opening of its newest regional distribution center, a 272,000-sq. ft. center in Jacksonville, FL, the company’s fifth major regional distribution center (RDC).

Master’s Coffee acquisition
Master’s Coffee and Water Service has acquired the assets of Glacier Pure Drinking Water. Master’s will offer coffee products and services to Glacier’s water customers, as well as more product choices, such as filtered water coolers.

NSF UK certification program announced
NSF International has introduced NSF REG4, an independent certification program that enables manufacturers of plumbing products and materials to demonstrate compliance with the UK’s Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations of 1999 and with equivalent water regulations in Scotland and Northern Ireland. NSF REG4 certifies mechanical products and non-metallic materials that are in contact with drinking water and is the new reference program for the UK market.

Guest Viewpoint from WQA President Steve Ver Strat

Sunday, March 15th, 2020

Steve Ver Strat, President, Water Quality Association
Amway Regulatory Policy Director

What an exciting time to be the Water Quality Association President! Our industry is stronger than ever, our association growing and expanding, and we are preparing to develop our Vision 20/20 at the upcoming WQA Convention and Exhibition. The industry continues to strengthen for several reasons. A key driver is the fundamental shift in consumer attitudes toward their drinking water. In the wake of Flint, MI (and now Newark, NJ), consumers continue to be concerned about lead.
Media reports are also leading them to worry about PFAS (the so-called ‘forever chemicals’) and other emerging contaminants. Although municipal water suppliers do an amazing job providing drinking water that meets state and federal standards, customers are increasingly looking to our industry for peace of mind. This need for credible assistance only reinforces the importance of our representatives to be trained and certified. WQA maintains a focus on the importance of certified products and works to speak authoritatively on behalf of our industry. As an example, last year we traveled to Newark to help the city educate the public on the use of certified products to protect against lead in their drinking water.
WQA’s updated Code of Ethics became effective in January this year. The associated marketing guidelines now set the expectation that member companies use terms like water softener as the industry has defined them in the WQA Knowledge Base Glossary. All WQA members and certified professionals pledge to uphold the Code of Ethics and this is essential for our credibility. We reviewed some of the updates to the code in a February 5 webinar, which can be viewed at wqa.org/webinars. We also are planning a general session panel discussion during the WQA Convention and Exposition, Ethics in the Water Treatment Industry, for which I highly recommend your attendance.
In fact, I highly recommend you attend all three days of the convention, April 1-3 in Orlando, FL. In view of our Vision 20/20 theme, we’re going to explore all the great ways our industry is growing and flourishing in 2020, and this continued expectation for years to come. Our keynote speaker, Simon T. Bailey, is the author of 10 books on being fearless and creating our future. He’s going to talk about how to “be the spark” for your business as part of our Opening General Session. Updates on the state of the association, inspiring words from WQA leaders, presentation of annual leadership awards and election of new members to the WQA Board of Directors will also be included in that session.
Our trade show will feature nearly 250 exhibiting companies offering the latest products and services in water treatment. We’ve expanded the hours this year so that everyone can take advantage of all the exposition has to offer, including the Learning Lab and Business Spotlights. Dozens of fascinating and challenging education sessions will cover such topics as emerging contaminants, commercial and industrial applications of water treatment, WQRF research and business operations topics. Attendees are welcome to visit most of the committee, section, advisory council and board of directors’ meetings, which will feature lively discussions on industry topics. Certified professionals can pick up potentially dozens of hours of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credits at the technical sessions.
If you are looking for more education in water treatment topics, consider our two technical workshops, the Commercial/Industrial RO Sizing Workshop and Introduction to Water Contaminants and Drinking Water Regulations MEP Workshop, offered on April 3 at an additional registration fee. Each offers the opportunity to earn 0.4 CPD total. If you are a dealer looking for practical tools and tips for running your water treatment business, consider coming a day early for the WQA Business Boot Camp on March 31. Create the Vision is the theme for the day-long, intensive workshop that features water industry and outside experts’ presentations on leadership, hiring, retaining and onboarding employees. More information and registration for all these events are available at our convention website: wqa.org/convention.
My presidency draws to a close at convention time, but I could not be more excited about the future of this great association. Thank you again for working with me and I look forward to seeing you in Orlando!

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