Bentley VPs named
Shannon appointed Aquionics sales VP
Zenith appointments announced
Promotion for NSF’s Kirkpatrick
Uribe appointed at NSPF
Eaton added to Hellenbrand sales team
Hayes hired at SolarBee
Rohm and Haas scholarship winner announced
Gasaway joins Nelsen’s Florida Distribution Center team
Nelsen Corporation named Jeffrey Gassaway, a 27-year veteran of retail and wholesale water treatment, to its new Florida Distribution Center team. For the last 12 years, Gassaway has served as Sales Manager of a large Florida wholesale water treatment product manufacturer. He currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Florida Water Quality Association. Gassaway holds a Bachelor’s Degree in marketing and economics from Ohio State University.
The Phoenix Challenge: a chat with Paul Hendricks
“Throughout the southwest, there’s lousy water coming into people’s homes. That’s really good for your business!” Few were prepared for the pragmatic candor of Paul Hendricks and his frank assessment startled many at WQA Aquatech’s manufacturers section meeting.
At the helm of his own environmental consultancy for years, Hendricks has an intimate understanding of the Phoenix area and its continuing growth. He predicts another 2.5 million residents for this booming Maricopa County metropolis in the next 10 years—and that is only the beginning. “I believe the next generation will know a Phoenix metroplex that extends straight through today’s Tucson…that metroplex will be home to 15 million people. And they will all need water.”
Throughout the west, the great majority of all water has already been allocated; in Phoenix, the only potentially ‘new’ water will be captured drainage from Buckeye. According to Hendricks, it is brackish and will need desalination. Yet he cautioned that the water treatment cannot rely on any municipality to adopt broad desalination strategies that would ensure the continued marketability of water softeners. “RO water is too expensive for any politician to introduce it and survive the next election,” he summed up.
For Phoenix, all groundwater is drinking water and every time TDS increases by 100/mgL it costs approximately $30 million in treatment. This means all TDS producers are under scrutiny. Hendricks likened that assessment to a pride of lions looking over an antelope herd. “Someone will be dinner… don’t let it be your industry!”
While the current economic downturn in many parts of the US has slowed new housing construction, Hendricks explained that Phoenix must have precisely that type of growth to maintain the current economics of the city, the fifth-largest in the country today. Salinity management strategies will be part of that growth and softeners can be part of the solution, depending on how we brand our business. “You can make a huge difference in policies and programs—and in the rates we all have to live with.”
Right now, there are 25,000 finished lots in Phoenix; 58,000 homes for resale and roughly 10,000 new houses for sale. In 2006, 80,000 new homes were built and of those, 80 percent opted to add POU treatment.
Using the Phoenix Challenge, this industry can take the next couple of years to ‘invent itself’ into the market. As WQA’s Pete Censky noted, thanks to Hendricks’ vision, we really have the opportunity to use Phoenix as a test bed for new ideas and products, which can then be exported worldwide. “We’ve had flat softener sales for decades. Thanks to the Phoenix Challenge and Paul Hendricks, we can reverse that with new, green technologies—sustainable for today and tomorrow.”