North America
NGWA conference to be virtual
The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) announced Groundwater Week 2020, December 8-11, will be an entirely virtual event for the first time in the association’s history. While traditionally held in-person and attracting thousands of attendees from across the world, restrictions on gatherings, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, led to the decision to move to a virtual format. Groundwater Week 2020 will feature every opportunity to maximize the virtual experience.

All About Water acquired
Wrench Group, LLC of Marietta, GA, has acquired Chandler, AZ-based company All About Water. This is Wrench Group’s fifth acquisition in 2020. All About Water has been providing plumbing and water treatment services to customers in the Phoenix metropolitan area since the 1970s. The company provides whole-home water filtration, new drinking water systems, advanced water softeners and plumbing repair services. The acquisition of All About Water expands the Wrench Group footprint in Phoenix and furthers the organization’s efforts to provide industry-leading home services to consumers.

PureRite Drinking Water acquired
Master’s Coffee and Water Service announced it acquired Hesperia’s PureRite Drinking Water. The transaction was finalized earlier this spring, but was not publicized out of respect for the national COVID focus. The move follows the December 2019 purchase of Glacier Pure Riverside and is part of Master’s previously announced acquisition strategy. More announcements are planned.

US EPA challenge award nominations sought
The American Chemical Society (ACS), in partnership with US EPA, announced the call for nominations for the 2021 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards, recognizing businesses, academic institutions and nonprofits for innovative green chemistry solutions and products. Nominations demonstrating innovations in green chemistry must be submitted to US EPA by December 4. More information about green chemistry and the Green Chemistry Challenge Awards program can be found at

Goulds certification announced
Goulds Water Technology, a Xylem brand, is one of the first in the industry to offer NSF 61-certified jet pumps for a wide range of residential, agricultural and boosting applications. The certification marks that any and all components coming into contact with the water in approved Goulds Water Technology jet pumps are safe for drinking water systems.

Water Well Trust grant announced
The Water Well Trust, a national nonprofit helping rural Americans get access to a clean, safe water supply, has received a $1-million (USD) grant from the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Household Water Well Systems (HWWS) program for projects to increase potable water availability to rural households throughout the US. The grant and matching funds from the Water Systems Council will be used to fund more than 80 Water Well Trust projects throughout the US. For the first time, the trust is being allowed to operate nationwide; previous USDA grants targeted specific states for the trust’s water-well project program.

Onerous CA vehicle regulation reported
The California Groundwater Association (CGA) has been notified that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) has voted to proceed on new regulations to be implemented by 2031. The intent is to further reduce total nitrogen oxides generated by heavy diesel engines in California. This would place an onerous burden on businesses, requiring unaffordable equipment purchases every 10 years. The full read is here: Comments are open for the next 45 days and can be found here:

Latin America
Chile desal plant proposed
IDE Technologies was recently awarded by Aguas Pacífico SpA the EPC contract for the Aconcagua Desalination Plant. The project includes the engineering, supply, construction, start-up and commissioning of a SWRO desalination plant with a nominal production capacity of 86,400 m3/day (1,000 liters per second). The plant will be located in the bay of Quintero in the Valparaíso Region, Chile. The plant will be the first drought-proof source of fresh water in the Aconcagua basin to serve municipal, agricultural, industrial and mining clients in the region.

Bahamian water agency failing
The Bahamas government has little choice but to bail out Water & Sewerage Corporation, which is “hanging on a very tight string,” a Cabinet minister confirmed yesterday. Desmond Bannister, Minister of Works, told Tribune Business that the state-owned water utility is facing “tremendous challenges” due to the growing number of customers unable to pay their bills because of COVID-19-related job and income losses. With the pandemic worsening the problems created by the corporation’s below-cost tariff rates and Hurricane Dorian, which inflicted millions of dollars in repair costs as well as wiping out virtually its entire Abaco customer base, Bannister said the financial position was becoming increasingly unsustainable with “tremendous amounts of money” now owing to suppliers, contractors and service providers.

IE expo China success reported
The leading platform for environmental technologies in Asia proved its importance despite all the uncertainties surrounding COVID-19 in the run-up to the event: 73,176 visitors traveled to Shanghai to learn about products and solutions from 1,851 companies, as well as market prospects. Despite the special circumstances, international joint booths from Germany, the US, Switzerland and France were represented, realized via local partners. Some of the individual international exhibitors also took advantage of this opportunity. Additionally, in a special area, around three dozen international companies presented themselves with posters.

ACS China agreement announced
In the first partnership of this type with an institution in Asia, the Publications Division of the American Chemical Society (ACS) announced a transformative open-access agreement with the National Health Research Institutes (NHRI) in Taiwan. The agreement, which will last through 2023, will help accelerate open-access publishing by NHRI’s researchers.


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