Water Journal : Water Journal September 2014
20 Industry News water SEPTEMBER 2014 In commenting on the standard of entries this year, Michael Gallagher, president and founder of the Stevie Awards said, “We congratulate all of the Stevie winners in this year’s IBAs. The quality of entries we receive improves every year. This year’s judges were rewarded with the opportunity to review more than 3,500 stories of business achievement and innovation from around the world. We look forward to celebrating the winners’ achievements in Paris on 10 October.” Details about The International Business Awards and the lists of Stevie Award winners are available at www.StevieAwards.com/IBA UNITED NATIONS WATERCOURSES CONVENTION ENTERS INTO FORCE The United Nations Watercourses Convention – the first global framework on freshwater and the world’s only global framework for transboundary cooperation endorsed by the General Assembly of the United Nations – officially entered into force in August 2014. “Our Board has been promoting the Convention because effective transboundary water management furthers peace and promotes cooperation, and is a fundamental element of sustainable development,” said Ms Uschi Eid, Chair of the UN Secretary- General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation. “It is high time to have it ratified, and I am satisfied it is going into force now, as we enter a new era of international cooperation defined by the post-2015 development agenda.” Currently, there are 276 transboundary freshwater lake and river basins worldwide, but only 40 per cent are governed by agreements. Where agreements exist, 80 per cent involve only two countries, even though other states may also be part of the watercourse in question. The Convention will standardise one set of criteria for which all countries with international river basins and transboundary waters abide, ensuring more practical management globally. These criteria include defining the subjects that countries should discuss on their shared waters, facilitating the process of transboundary cooperation and holding governments accountable to their own countries and regions. “We have found that we cannot achieve the same level of conservation goals in regions where countries are not cooperating on transboundary water management,” said Lifeng Li, Director of WWF’s global freshwater program. “Nature and wildlife do not respect national borders, and some of the most crucial areas for biodiversity are linked to international rivers and lakes. The UN Watercourses Convention will play an important role in creating a world in which people live in harmony with nature.” Marie-Laure Vercambre, Director of Green Cross International’s Water for Life and Peace Programme, emphasised the importance of the Convention, saying, “Not only will the governance of the largest and best known watercourses be enhanced by the UN Watercourses Convention, but all transboundary basins of a country’s territory will benefit from it, providing a harmonised legal coverage to all those watercourses that we know will be more and more exploited, utilised and developed.” For more information about the UNWC, please visit wwf.panda. org/unwc or www.unwatercoursesconvention.org NEW CEO TAKES THE HELM AT BIOGILL Steve Atherton has been appointed CEO at bio-technology company BioGill, while founder and previous CEO, John West, has moved into an international business development role to take advantage of the company’s overseas opportunities. Commenting on the appointment, John Petty, BioGill’s Chairman, said, “Steve is a highly experienced and effective CEO with an impressive and extensive record in product development, revenue growth and in driving profitability. In his previous CEO role at an energy recovery and engineering company, Steve and his team tripled revenue both organically and through acquisitions and set up the business for a successful sale to a publicly listed company, delivering considerable value to the shareholders. “At BioGill, Steve’s key responsibility is to map out the true potential of the technology in the international wastewater industries, aquaculture and maritime, and develop strategies to globalise the business.” BioGill is a disruptive technology in the biological treatment of wastewater. The technology was developed in the research laboratories of the Australian federal government agency, ANSTO, and BioGill was established to commercialise the technology. The company has wastewater treatment projects in Australia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Canada, Fiji, China, India, Mexico and the USA. Steve holds a Masters’ Degree in Engineering Science as well as a Bachelors’ Degree in Science (Engineering). THE RIVER RED GUM – MUCH MORE THAN JUST A TREE Perhaps more so than any other Australian plant or animal, the river red gum has been central to the tensions .between economic, social and environmental values of rivers and floodplain landscapes in Australia. Flooded Forest and Desert Creek: Ecology and History of the River Red Gum, a new CSIRO book, examines not only the ecology of one of the most iconic Australian trees, but how changes in attitudes towards it have reflected broader shifts in values of Australian society.
Water Journal November 2014
Water Journal August 2014