Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher
Looking back at the past few summers, I think this one is much different. Why? Let’s take a look at my list of reasons. The economy has done a turnaround of sorts. Business owners don’t seem to be in a state of panic about what will happen next and fewer businesses are closing their doors. More people are taking advantage of convention benefits. New opportunities for water treatment professionals are appearing more often than in the past. That last one, though, is a double-edged sword.
The importance of good quality water has been escalating to much higher levels, not through advertising or experience with good products, but because of preventable disasters. From the massive algal bloom in Lake Erie to the chemical contamination event in Elk River, WV and now the massive lead contamination in Flint, MI, those who previously took the availability of potable water for granted are clamoring to protect themselves and their families. It’s no longer a third-world problem but a common situation right in our own backyard; yet these events are preventable. The industry has proven time and again that the proper systems, personnel, equipment and training can prevent the poisoning of our society. Without the regulators and other governmental officials operating hand-in-hand with the water treatment professionals and specialists, though, we can only wait for the next preventable disaster to occur.
Water treatment is a centuries-old practice. New methods and technologies are constantly evolving, based on our need to secure clean water. And humans have done a pretty remarkable job of finding ways to protect their water resources. But the old ways are also still in play. One of the most common treatment options is the use of activated carbon (AC) in a multitude of filtration configurations. This month, Oxbow Carbon’s Robert Potwora gives an overview of the importance of particle size. Jon Maurer, Green Technology Consulting, provides information on AC sourcing for the coming century and Henry Nowicki of PACS investigates a possible renewable source. Aquaphor’s Alexey Aksenov and others present a case study on newly designed carbon blocks for POU/POE systems.
Dr. Kelly A. Reynolds, MSPH, PhD, looks more closely at why Americans are now worrying about their water resources. WQA is taking an active part in making the government aware of the wide range of talent and expertise our segment of the water treatment industry can provide, anytime, anywhere. Kathleen Fultz, WQA’s regulatory guru, offers insight on the most recent interaction between WQA and US officials to help resolve the water problems that should never happen. Also in this issue, Gary Battenberg of Parker Hannifin concludes his series on ion exchange basics.
Old systems need to be replaced, new systems sold and installed and others put on hiatus for absent owners; there’s always a need for water treatment. You are an on-demand water professional, a specialist who knows the answers and the go-to person when calamity strikes. Be the best and keep our water safe.