Toray Industries and China National BlueStar, a subsidiary of China National Chemical Corporation, have agreed to establish a water treatment joint venture, Toray Blue Star Membrane Co., Ltd in Beijing. It will be established in May 2009 with 35 million (USD) capital (approximately 3.5 billion yen) and engage in production, sales, import and export of water treatment membrane products. Toray estimates this market to reach 500 million (USD), or 50 billion yen, in five years and aims to capture a 30 percent share of that market.?

EcoWater Systems LLC’s new Service Lease Plan PLUS Program, an alternative financing option for its nationwide dealer network, will provide dealers with a way to increase revenues while avoiding credit approvals and costly finance fees. The firm also acquired privately owned Crisma, a 30-year old Modena, Italy company specializing in residential water treatment. It will be fully integrated into EcoWater Systems Europe NV and continue to be led by founders Maurizio Magnanini and Maria Cristina Camilloni.?

Trojan Technologies garnered Outstanding Water Disinfection Equipment Brand honors in the annual independent Outstanding Equipment Survey conducted by China Water Net. Of 21 measuring indexes for the survey, Trojan scored in the top three spots for each category. S
Purolite Corporation recently received ISO 9001:2000 certification for its manufacturing plant in Philadelphia, as well as its corporate offices in Bala Cynwyd, PA.  The company has ISO 9000:2001 certified sales offices in more than 30 countries, as well as manufacturing and R&D facilities in the US, China and Romania.?

Purolite Corporation recently received ISO 9001:2000 certification for its manufacturing plant in Philadelphia, as well as its corporate offices in Bala Cynwyd, PA.  The company has ISO 9000:2001 certified sales offices in more than 30 countries, as well as manufacturing and R&D facilities in the US, China and Romania.?


North America

Pentair operations adjusted

Pentair Inc. cut its fourth-quarter and full-year adjusted earnings projections, due in part to volume declines in its technical products unit as well as certain industrial, commercial and residential water businesses. The company said it would cut 1,600 jobs (or more than 10 percent of its work force). By the end of 2009, the company is closing 15 facilities when compared to year-end 2007, responding to global economic conditions by accelerating restructuring actions, instituting a freeze on hiring and annual salary increases, aggressively reducing indirect costs and adjusting capital expenditure levels.
Pentair recently approved an increase in the company’s quarterly cash dividend of one cent per share, effective with the quarterly dividend payable in the first quarter of 2009. The new quarterly cash dividend rate ($0.18 cents per share as compared to the previous rate of $0.17 per share) represents a six percent increase.

Norland and PGBC agreement outlined

Norland International has entered into an agreement with Planet Green Bottle Corporation (PGBC), to introduce Reverte™ (a registered trademark of Wells Plastics, Ltd.) oxo-biodegradable (oxo-bio) PET plastic preforms and bottles to the bottled water and beverage industries. Norland’s commitment increases PGBC affiliations with partner manufacturers toward PGBC’s goal of 10 strategic partners all directed at making the world’s first PET plastic bottles oxo-biodegradable using PGBC’s proprietary additive.  The corporation has the exclusive worldwide agreement with Wells (UK) to introduce oxo-biodegradable PET preforms and plastic bottles to the beverage and pharmaceutical industries on a global basis.

NGWA Expo numbers released

The National Ground Water Association’s (NGWA) 2008 Ground Water Expo and Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, NV recorded the third highest number of registered contractors and the second highest number of suppliers in the event’s 59-year history. There were 1,333 registered manufacturers, 2,693 contractors and 767 suppliers. A 62-percent increase in engineer/scientist registrants (453) was also noted. Attendees numbered 5,425, among the largest ever. Only seven times has total attendance exceeded 5,000—five of those times since 2000. The organization’s next event, 2009 National Ground Water Awareness Week, will be March 8-14.

PACS anniversary, call for participants

Activated Carbon Services (ACS) and Professional Analytical and Consulting Services (PACS) Corporation will celebrate its 25th anniversary this year. PACS has sixty short courses designed for scientists and engineers and provides public and on-site, one- to three-day courses. Positions are available for instructors and consultants at PACS.
A new technology from PACS to clean used activated carbons needs participants and partners. Participants should be GAC users who provide water purification. The role is a three-step interaction with PACS. Partners should be providers of products and services for the drinking water market interested in new product commercialization. Contact PACS President, Henry Nowicki, Ph.D. at Henry@pacslabs.com for more information.

Membrana news

Membrana’s first-full scale aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) deoxygenation trial using Liqui-Cel® membrane contactors was commissioned in Bradenton, FL last December. The arsenic content in the recovered water is often higher than the US EPA threshold of 10 ppb. The goal of the project is to determine if removal of dissolved oxygen helps control arsenic mobilization.

The company’s membrane contactors have also been selected as the degasification technology at the largest organic light-emitting diode (OLED) plant in South Korea. Bumhan designed and is building the deoxygenation system that utilizes 14 x 28 and 10 x 28 membrane contactors. The system will process 260 m3/hour (1,145 gpm) of water and will reduce dissolved O2 levels from 8,550 ppb down to less than two ppb.

WQA news

WQA’s expansion of the Gold Seal Program is expected to include the opening of offices in India and China (Bangalore and Shanghai, respectively) during the first quarter of 2009. These offices will be responsible for introduction of the program throughout both countries; promoting WQA membership, conducting Gold Seal factory audits, policing WQA membership and Gold Seal registered logos and attending task force meetings.

Santa Clarita Valley, CA voters approved a measure in Nov. 2008 requiring homeowners to remove any automatic water softeners this year. The local sanitation district supported the anti-softener campaign, claiming it would allow them to avid an expensive upgrade of the wastewater treatment plant to remove salts.
WQA is soliciting final proposals for an independent research firm to show the effects of hardness on major appliances and clothing. The project will use the same approach as a study conducted 30 years ago by New Mexico State University. This will allow comparative analysis to be developed.

NWRI call for nominations

National Water Research Institute opened nominations for its 2009 Athalie Richardson Irvine Clarke Prize. The Clarke Prize, established in 1993, awards outstanding individuals who significantly contribute toward the discovery, development, improvement and/or understanding of the issues associated with water quality, quantity, technology or public policy. One of only a dozen prizes that rewards scholarly and practical achievements in water research, the prize includes a medallion and $50,000 (USD). The International Congress of Distinguished Awards designated it as one of the most prestigious in the world. Nominations are due by March. Visit www.nwri-usa.org/nominations.htm for more information.

Dow news

Eighteen local nonprofit organizations in the Twin Cities metro area have collectively received more than $100,000 (USD) as a result of charitable donations from Edina, MN-based Dow Water Solutions. Recipients included the American Red Cross, Edina’s Education, Fire and Police Funds, Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Upper Midwest and Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity.

Dow Chemical Company and K2 Pure Solutions (K2) entered an agreement for K2 to build and operate a bleach plant at Dow’s Pittsburg, CA site. The new plant will serve municipal water treatment markets in northern California.

The company has established the Dow Only Representative Trustee (ORT) to leverage the European Union’s Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) registrations and reduce costs along its supply chains. The regulation stipulates that companies manage the risks of all chemical substances and preparations they produce, import, process, use and/or distribute in the EU in quantities greater than one ton per year. With the ORT solution, Dow would enable its selected direct non-EU customers and indirect EU customers (importers) to avoid excessive REACH compliance costs.

Dealer program announced

Water-Right introduced its new Evolve Professional Level Dealer Program, offering participating dealers many of the benefits served up by traditional franchise and company-sponsored programs. It provides for the sale of an exclusive product line of residential water treatment products that can be tailored to meet the needs of both rural well and municipal water applications, all within an assigned, authorized territory. The program is designed to provide the support mechanisms necessary to ensure success in the ever-changing water treatment industry, from offering highly flexible co-op advertising and long-term financing to ease the strain of building a strong rental base, to an array of sales and marketing training.

NSPF approved as provider

The National Swimming Pool Foundation® has been approved as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).
Effective immediately, individuals who enroll in the two-day Certified Pool/Spa Operator® Certification training course, Pool Operator Primer™ Pool Operator Fusion™ and the World Aquatic Health™ Conference on-line seminars will be eligible for CEUs. There are plans to provide CEUs for all NSPF educational products by the close of 2009.

NAS study members selected

A National Academy of Sciences’ National Research Council committee has selected members to participate in a US EPA-sponsored study assessing water reuse as a means of meeting future water supply needs. The study will examine the potential for water reclamation and reuse of municipal wastewater to expand and enhance our nation’s water supply alternatives. It will assess the technology, risks, costs, research needs and barriers to implementation.  A report is expected in mid-2010. Agencies interested in supporting the study should contact Stephanie Johnson at the National Research Council at (202) 334-3385 or sjohnson@nas.edu.

USGS report on contamination

Analysis of a study of water from nine selected rivers by the US Geological Survey (USGS) found low levels of certain man-made chemicals remain in public water supplies after being treated in selected community water facilities. Scientists tested water samples for about 260 commonly used chemicals, including pesticides, solvents, gasoline hydrocarbons, personal care and household-use products, DBPs and manufacturing additives. About 130 were detected in streams and rivers before treatment at public water facilities. This study did not look at pharmaceuticals or hormones.

US EPA news

US EPA ordered 11 public potable water systems throughout California to reduce arsenic levels in their drinking water systems or face daily fines of up to $32,500 (USD) for each violation. The order required system owners to develop and meet a schedule to comply with the Safe Drinking Water Act’s 10 ppb standard. It affected systems in Fresno, Kern, Kings, Nevada and Sonoma counties.

US EPA honored five Water Efficiency Leaders, comprised of utilities, individuals, corporations, non-governmental organizations and government late last year. They were recognized for their contributions in reducing, reusing and recycling water through leadership, innovation and conservation. Named were Pinellas County Utilities (Clearwater, FL); PepsiCo (Purchase, NY); Acequia (Austin, TX); Commissioner Robert J. Hunter (Atlanta, GA); Homewise, Inc. (Santa Fe, NM) and Orange County Water District (Orange County, CA.).

Europe

ITT product line acquired by Siemens

Siemens Water Technologies has been awarded the sole license for the global manufacture and supply of the entire range of products, service and replacement parts for ITT Corporation’s Portacel product line. ITT will no longer manufacture and sell the products and spares. The licensing agreement includes the supply of products as well as aftermarket support of monitoring and dosing equipment for disinfection of potable water and in particular, of vacuum dosing of gaseous and liquid chlorine. The agreement will allow Siemens to broaden its scope of chemical feed and disinfection support worldwide.

First Balkan company certified by NSF

NSF recently certified European bottled water company Jana, Inc. (dba Jamnica d.d.) of Croatia, a first in the Balkans. Jana’s bottling facility is located in Gorica Svetojanska, where water is bottled at the source at an underground depth of 2,500 feet (762 meters). NSF auditors conducted a rigorous facility audit and verified compliance with EU directives, US Food and Drug Administration regulations and NSF requirements.

Asia

Water Expo China a success

Water Expo China, held last November in Bejing, realized a 50-percent increase in participation over the previous years. Israeli and Japanese pavilions proved a popular visitor draw. The event attracted 200 exhibitors from 18 countries, with a record number of 8,147 visitors from 26 countries and regions. Of these 7,935 were domestic and 212 international.

New Cambodian bottler

A new player in Cambodia’s purified drinking water market has seen early signs of success with a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant and production facility in Kampot province and expects to distribute nationwide in 2009, according to The Phnom Penh Post. TADA Bokor Natural Spring Drinking Water began operations in early November 2008; T-DA Import Export Co. Ltd. distributes the brand in Kampot province, Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh.

UPS center opened

UPS opened a new international hub in Shanghai in December, built to a unique design that facilitates rapid handling. The center, with a package sorting capacity of 17,000 pieces per hour, will improve access to China and speed the movement of express packages and heavy freight around the world. Strategically located at the Pudong International Airport in the heart of the Yangtze River Delta area, it features the largest on-site 24/7 customs inspection area in Shanghai and is the key gateway linking China to UPS’s global network.

US water associations join eco-partnership

The US water industry joined the US Trade and Development Agency, US EPA and the US Foreign Commercial Service (FCS) in China to support the US-China Strategic Economic Dialogue (SED) Ten-Year Framework on Energy and Environment. The collaboration establishes a public-private partnership (eco-partnership) to mobilize private sector expertise and resources to address water quality issues in China. The Water Environment Federation (WEF), the Water & Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Association (WWEMA) and the WateReuse Association will work with these agencies and Chinese counterparts to address prior water needs. China will identify priority projects for joint cooperation.

Middle East

Argonide media test results

Results of a study on RO fouling conducted at a desalination plant in Libya by Dr. Ibrahim El-Azizi, of the University of Sheffield proved noteworthy for Argonide Corporation. Its electropositive nano alumina Disruptor™ media was deemed the best solution for reducing RO fouling in seawater desalination plants. Using the media prior to SWRO membranes reduced energy consumption, chemical cleaning frequency, prolonged membrane life and consequently, reduced operational costs.

Latin America

Ozone distributor announced

Freshwater Technologies Inc. has acquired distribution rights to Ozocan Corporation’s ozone water treatment systems for Argentina, Chile, Peru, Costa Rica and Panama, according to Market Wire. Used in a variety of water treatment applications, Ozocan products effectively treat municipal and industrial drinking water and wastewater and are used in bottled water applications and for treating air conditioning and cooling water installations.

Brazil approval for certification

Instituto Falcao Bauer da Qualidade (IFBQ), one of Brazil’s two accredited laboratories and WQA signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to assist with the country’s transition to mandatory product testing and certification of drinking water products in 2010. Prior to March 31, 2010, testing and certification will be voluntary. With the MOU in place, WQA can perform testing to Brazilian standards and the results can be used by IFBQ for certification. Companies wishing to export to the US can use IFBQ for testing and certification of their products to NSF/ANSI standards for WQA certification.

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