Hall’s Culligan Water, of Wichita, Kansas purchased Culligan Water Conditioning of Jefferson City, Mo. New owner C. R. Hall pledged to bring additional resources in support of the local franchise. Hall’s now owns 16 franchises throughout the Midwest.

A 12,000 sq. ft. expansion of Water-Right, Inc.’s manufacturing operations and headquarters in Appleton, Wis. was recently completed. The addition will support increased component inventory of current product lines and the company’s new residential water softener products.

The correct phone number for Performance Water Products’ new Wisconsin facility is (262) 853-7038.

Culligan Water Conditioning and Guaranteed Water Systems of Orange County, CA have agreed with the Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District of Los Angeles County to remove automatic water softeners currently rented to Santa Clarita Valley customers. The agreement will affect approximately 50 Guaranteed and 1,000 Culligan customers, Marketwire reported and removals are to be completed by 2009.

The International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) filed a lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court to overturn a City of Chicago ordinance that imposes a five-cent-per-container tax on bottled water. The Illinois Retail Merchants Association, the Illinois Food Retailers Association and the American Beverage Association are also plaintiffs in the suit.

The Purolite Company moved its Canadian operations to a new location in January. The new address for transactions is The Purolite Company, Division of Bro-Tech Corporation, PO Box 308, Paris, Ontario, Canada N3L 3G2. New contact numbers are phone: (519) 448-4512 and fax: (519) 448-4665.


North America

US EPA WEL awards

The US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) announced its 2007 Water Efficiency Leader (WEL) winners, honored for their efforts in reducing, reusing and recycling water. Six category winners were chosen by a panel of national water experts, based on three criteria: leadership, innovation and water saved: Intel Corporation, Ocotillo Campus of Chandler, Ariz. (corporate); Santa Clara Valley Water District, San Jose, Calif. (government); Frito-Lay of Plano, Texas (industry); Lackland Air Force Base in Lackland, Texas (military); Kentucky Pollution Prevention Center (KPPC) at the University of Louisville (nongovernmental organization) and Allan Dietemann, Seattle Public Utilities, Seattle, Wash. – (individual).

The agency announced the addition of new features to its popular Laws, Regulations, Guidance and Dockets website. User-friendliness has been enhanced with more accessible ways to search and comment on US EPA regulations and significant guidance documents and to learn how environmental regulations are written. The site also includes new sections for finding regulations and related documents, plus regulatory history, statutory authority, supporting analyses, compliance information and guidance for implementation. Searches can be conducted by environmental topics, such as water or air, or by business sectors, such as transportation
or construction.

Culligan media campaign launched

Culligan International responded to concerns about bottled water with an information campaign to let consumers know there are numerous ways to make the most of tap water, save money and help the environment. The company also released tips on how to be more ‘water wise’ in the kitchen; for example, that using untreated tap water may compromise the nuances of cooking and contribute to environmental waste when it comes to cleaning pots, pans and appliances used to prepare favorite recipes. Traces of chlorine can produce an unpleasant taste and odor that can affect water-based recipes and ice cubes used to chill beverages. Residents on private or community well systems may find that sulfur found in some hard water sources contributes to a rotten egg smell; iron or copper can produce a metallic aftertaste and water that flows over rocks, soils and vegetation sometimes contains a salty or bitter taste. Visit www.culligan.com for more information.

Special pricing offered at barbecues

WATER, INC. announced it would continue to host annual barbecues in California for consumers, designers, plumbers and other members of the trade. Last year’s events held with RV Cloud and Fresno Distributing featured special one-day pricing on Water, Inc.’s products, raffle drawings and a tri-tip and sausage barbecue . Rick Tarantino, Executive Vice President of WATER, INC. said,  “The barbecues provide us with the opportunity to meet the contractors and plumbers that install our products while informing them of new products we are launching.”

Nelsen Corporation 2008 sweepstakes announced

Nelsen Corporation’s Water. It’s Our Life. Vacation Sweepstakes offers three opportunities to win a dream vacation for two. From the beginning of the sweepstakes, no entries will be discarded, so even a single entry at the start of the contest will have multiple chances to win a Caribbean Cruise; a Las Vegas Getaway and an Alaskan Cruise. Each vacation package includes airfare from any major airport within the continental US for the winner and their guest and $1,000 for expenses, souvenirs, etc. Drawings will be held May 1, August 15 and December 1. No purchase necessary to enter; complete rules are available on the company’s website, www.nelsencorp.com.

NSF workplace recognized

NSF International was recently named 2007 Company of the Year by the Ann Arbor Business Review. Kevan P. Lawlor, NSF President and CEO said, “It is an honor to be recognized as the 2007 Company of the Year. This award exemplifies our dedication to the local community and supports our overall public health and safety mission.” The organization was also tapped by Crain’s Detroit Business as one of its Cool Places to Work. Criteria include promoting teamwork, encouraging creativity and providing great benefits. NSF was recognized for its innovation, flexible hours and training opportunities.

US Senate hears NGWA testimony

The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) testified before the US Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources in support of key provisions of the SECURE (Science and Engineering to Comprehensively Understand and Responsibly Enhance) Water Act. NGWA representative David Wunsch urged the committee to consider modifications to the bill that would ensure sufficient funding and flexibility for states to gather data consistent with the goals of the act. NGWA commended the bill’s inclusion of provisions to take into account the potential impacts of climate change on the nation’s water resources.

Pentair dividend increase announced

Directors of Pentair, Inc. recently approved an increase in the company’s regular quarterly cash dividend of 13 percent (two cents per share), effective with the quarterly dividend payable in the first quarter of 2008. The new quarterly cash dividend rate ($.0.17 cents per share as compared to the previous rate of $0.15 per share) represents Pentair’s 31st consecutive annual dividend increase.

MIOX technology honored

The US Department of the Navy showcased MIOX’s personal water purifier in its 2007 SBIR/STTR Success Stories. The company’s product was the only technology with military, commercial and humanitarian applications. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR), a highly competitive program that empowers small businesses to realize their technological potential, provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. The Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program provides funding opportunities in innovative research and development.

Fed examining bottled water production issues

A US House of Representatives subcommittee is looking at the environmental impact of water bottling and extraction on communities across the country. Chair of the House Subcommittee on Domestic Policy, Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), convened the hearing in response to concerns of citizen groups from New Hampshire to California. Those speaking at the hearing are challenging the aggressive lobbying and public relations efforts of corporations who bottle water (or intend to bottle water). Professors from Michigan and Wayne State were scheduled to speak to the environmental hazards of bottling. International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) President and CEO Joe Doss presented testimony about the bottled water industry’s minimal use of groundwater resources to produce a healthy, safe and convenient packaged beverage product. The bottled water industry accounts for only 0.02 percent of all groundwater withdrawals in the US, according to a 2005 study by the Drinking Water Research Foundation (DWRF). Doss also noted his industry’s support of comprehensive groundwater resource management.

NSPF study results

The National Swimming Pool Foundation® (NSPF®) reported preliminary results from the two-year Hot Tub Immersion study under the direction of Dr. Bruce Becker of Washington State University. Co-funded by NSPF and 12 industry leaders, the study focuses on the effects of warm/hot water immersion upon the heart and respiratory system and to what extent relaxation occurs. Some findings show that warm-water immersion seems to have a significant effect on the autonomic nervous system, enhancing the balance between parasympathetic (relaxation) and sympathetic components of the system. These changes were consistent across all subjects tested. Dr. Becker indicated it is very likely these nervous system effects have positive health-related implications.

Sylvan named global award winner

Sylvan Source has been selected as a winner of the inaugural Red Herring 100 Global Award. Evaluations were made on both quantitative and qualitative criteria, such as financial performance, innovation, management, global strategy and ecosystem integration. Red Herring 100 winners and finalists from North America, Europe and Asia for the last three years were eligible.

AQUA Show

The 2007 AQUA Show held in Las Vegas, Nev. late last year proved to be a substantial event for the spa and pool industry. With 71,000 net square feet of exhibits at 710 booths, 275 exhibitors and 4,430 attendees, the show was a valuable experience for all. AQUA Magazine sponsored more than 40 educational sessions presented by industry experts that provided fresh and creative ideas, insight, techniques, inspiration and solid retailer advice to further business success.

PerkinElmer/ESI joint project announced

PerkinElmer Life and Analytical Sciences and Elemental Scientific Inc. (ESI) agreed to offer integrated sample introduction systems designed to improve throughput when making measurements under US EPA Methods 200.7 and 200.8 analyses. The two methods focus on the determination of metal concentration in drinking water, in addition to other environmental applications. The systems reduce non-productive time segments of analyses, including uptake, stabilization and rinse times

Motorola grant for JETS

The Junior Engineering Technical Society (JETS) announced it received a $50,000 Motorola Foundation Innovation Generation Grant to support a girl-focused initiative through a collaborative effort with the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools. The Coalition considers science, technology, engineering and math a top curriculum priority. JETS connected with three leading groups, The Society of Women Engineers (SWE), Extraordinary Women Engineers Project (EWEB) and Techbridge, each providing material that promotes engineering and technology and encourages participation in programs that show how engineers make a difference in our lives.

California water crisis addressed

A coalition of business leaders and former governors urged leaders in Sacramento to promote aggressive and immediate action on water supply and infrastructure issues, in preparation for a severe cutback in water deliveries. Under terms of a 2007 federal court decision, the Department of Water Resources is cutting its initial allocation in 2008. In a letter to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders, the Southern California Leadership Council called for a concerted ‘local projects’ assistance program and a state bond program providing matching funds for local efforts. The business group said Southern Californians must assume a fair share of the burden in finding a long-term solution to the issue and must add to and maximize the use of local resources.

New membrane created

Researchers at the University of Illinois have developed a new generation of biomimetic membranes for water treatment and drug delivery. The highly permeable and selective membranes are based on the incorporation of the functional water channel protein Aquaporin Z (a protein found in E. coli bacteria) into a novel A-B-A triblock copolymer. The experimental membranes, currently in the form of vesicles, show significantly higher water transport than existing reverse osmosis (RO) membranes used in water purification and desalination. When tested, the productivity of the membranes was more than 10-times greater than other salt-rejecting polymeric membranes.

Filtration process recognized by NASA

NASA named an inexpensive, nonchlorine-based technology that can remove harmful microorganisms from drinking water as one of the top innovations of 2007. NASA Tech Briefs reported that the technology, developed by University of Delaware’s Yan Jin, Professor of Environmental Physics and Pei Chiu, Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, could dramatically improve the safety of drinking water around the globe, particularly in developing countries. By using elemental iron in the filtration process, the researchers were able to remove 99.999 percent of viral agents from drinking water at very high efficiencies.

ALD office opened in southeast

American Leak Detection (ALD) announced the opening of its newest regional corporate office in Fort Lauderdale, located at 237 Goolsby Blvd., Deerfield, FL 33442. The office will serve as a strategic regional hub for servicing residential, commercial and municipal clients. For information, call (954) 792-4333.

CIPHEX 2007 success announced

The Canadian Institute of Plumbing & Heating’s 2007 CIPHEX Roadshows, held in St. John’s, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Regina and Vancouver, attracted over 1,300 contractors, wholesaler distributors, engineers and designers and government officials. Visitors met with 98 companies exhibiting a wide variety of plumbing, water treatment and other products and took part in several seminars.

Designer cooler for PHSI

PHSI Pure Water Technology ®, Sandpoint Idaho, has been chosen to manufacture and market Wodor Group of Denmark’s ENKI™ water cooler, designed by Jacob Jensen Design, a Danish company.

Purfresh news

Novazone, Inc., has changed its corporate name to Purfresh, Inc. The California-based firm develops and manufactures patented, ozone-based solutions for food and water quality and safety. Its chemical-free, ozone-based products have been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), US EPA and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to kill water and foodborne pathogens that lead to illnesses such as E. coli and salmonella.

The new enterprise also announced it has secured $25 million in Series C financing. The company plans to expand global sales and marketing of its clean solutions, chemical-free and ozone-based products for food and water. Investors include Chilton Investment Company, Foundation Capital, Grauer Capital and Chrysalix Energy; one additional strategic investor was not named.

Latin America

PET sale to Mexican company

Eastman Chemical Company has completed the sale of its PET polymers business related to its Cosoleacaque, Mexico and Zarate, Argentina manufacturing sites to ALFA, S.A.B. de C.V. (ALFA), a Mexican industrial company. Terms of the sale were not disclosed. Eastman previously announced that it had entered into an agreement for the sale, subject to customary approvals.

Eco-Safe distribution in Mexico

Eco-Safe Systems USA, Inc. signed a Distribution Agreement for its products with Eco-Safe Mexico, its first distribution contract for expansion into international markets. The products include ozone food-safety and water disinfection systems with services ranging from food disinfection to water reclamation and desalinization. The distributor is currently negotiating 12 desalinization contracts for hotels and resorts with 100 to 1500 units; some initial projects are envisioned to close in the first quarter. Eco-Safe Systems USA holds 30 percent ownership of the distributor.

Sinquiver expansion into water treatment

Chilean chemicals company Sinquiver has joined with desalination researcher and engineering consultant Thomas Peters to promote water treatment solutions in the local market, according to Business News Americas. Chile has become an attractive market for companies focused on designing solutions for wastewater and industrial liquid waste treatment, as many companies still fail to comply with the country’s DS-90 regulation regarding industrial wastewater discharges. Sinquiver, the head of Chile’s waterworks regulator SISS, Magaly Espinosa and a number of universities have met to discuss membrane systems training and its potential in Latin America. The officials joined with scientist Bernabé Rivas and plan on launching the Chilean Membrane Association next year.

Europe

Frost & Sullivan global insight offered

Arsenic contamination of drinking water is a growing concern that affects the long-term health of large populations across the globe, according to Frost & Sullivan. Millions of people in third world nations need mitigation technologies, medical treatment and infrastructure to properly address the issue on a long-term basis. Industry participants can expect significant opportunities in the fields of arsenic detection and development of efficient mitigation methodologies. The organization also indicated that water treatment for the European residential market is estimated to be worth about US$500 million. The overall momentum of the market is driven by the double-digit annual market growth rate in southern Europe. A huge opportunity exists for industry players as the market is still in the growth phase.

IFAT to be larger show

IFAT 2008, anticipated to be significantly larger than IFAT 2005, will expand exhibition space to 6,780,416 square feet (192,000 m3). International exhibitor bookings have risen by 18 percent. The schedule of events for the Munich, Germany trade show includes conferences, symposia and forums exploring new directions for the future. Exhibitors and associations will be presenting lectures and panel discussions on current product developments, trends and market analyses in the forums.

Bottled water market growth expected

Bottled water sales in East Europe increased by 15 percent during 2006, Zenith International reported. Rising standards of living along with a greater appreciation of health and hydration have helped almost double consumption per person since 2001 to 10 gallons (38 liters) a year. Since the West European average is 29 gallons (110 liters) per person, the market is likely to hold substantial further potential for water bottlers. Hungary was the fastest growing country last year, increasing sales by 24 percent to over 229 million gallons (870 million liters). The region’s largest and most established market, Poland, advanced 23 percent, following a period of mixed fortunes. Russia, Bulgaria and Estonia all continued to build on the huge advances made since 2001, with five-year volume growth of 118 percent, 138 percent and 140 percent respectively. The Czech Republic remains the highest consuming country at 24.5 gallons (93 liters) per person.

Kärcher to offer POU systems
German manufacturer Alfred Kärcher GmbH & Co. KG’s new household point of use (POU) water purification systems will feature small-type filtration modules with patented multi-bore membranes from ultrafiltration specialist inge AG. Customized ultrafiltration modules were designed to Kärcher’s specifications for the product line.

IChemE honors PuriTech

PuriTech’s IONEX technology process was tapped for the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) Water Awards, sponsored by the IChemE Water Subject Group. The innovative technology has a variety of applications in numerous industries, from water treatment to sugar refining and mining. Anglian Water’s advanced system for removing nitrate from drinking water, a process that relies on PuriTech’s expertise and ion exchange technology, was also honored by the Group.

Asia

Success for drinktec

The inaugural two-day drink technology + PET India Conference in Mumbai last November was a huge success, according to participants and organizers alike. 539 specialists from 15 countries, including 30 media representatives, took part in the event. Presentations by 42 companies provided a forum for discussions and information exchange, while visitors gathered information about the latest market developments and current trends in beverage and liquid-food technology.

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