Business Wire

Black & Veatch Provides Recommendations for Overcoming Economic Pressures in the Water Industry


Source: Business Wire

Global roundtable with 90 water industry thought leaders provides insights

KANSAS CITY, Mo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Black & Veatch today provided six key recommendations for overcoming economic pressures in the water industry during the Water Environment Federation’s (WEF) WEFTEC® 2011 event in Los Angeles. The recommendations are in a just-released white paper by Dan McCarthy, President and CEO of Black & Veatch’s global water business.

The recommendations come from Black & Veatch’s Water Dialogue series, which was launched at WEFTEC last year. The high-level roundtable discussions with about 90 water industry thought leaders were held during six global conferences. Included in the findings from the dialogues are actions and processes to help water industry leaders manage current economic pressures.

“Increasing water infrastructure investments will provide much needed jobs and avert looming disasters in the process,” said McCarthy. “While roads, bridges, and rail are important investments, the most vital infrastructure is the delivery and treatment of water. In many places future water resources are underfunded or not funded at all.”

Six key recommendations emerged from discussions during the various venues. Participants in the dialogues said that in order to adapt and lead in these difficult economic times, water utility and other industry leaders should:

  • Find new business opportunities or revenue streams and then, once identified, put them into play
  • Determine the best source or mix of new and established financing options
  • Facilitate innovation to deal with the “new norm” and to discover the next big idea
  • Collaborate more closely with all stakeholders and create “one voice” for water
  • Reach out to educate the public about water issues
  • Optimize assets to control costs

“Economic pressures have challenged all of us to think differently and develop new strategies,” McCarthy said. “With the current level of funding for municipal water systems it calls for a ‘new deal’ type of arrangement – a combination of investors unlike any other approach tried before. History is no longer the guiding light for managing this precious resource.”

Links to the white paper, other background materials and published articles about each individual roundtable discussion are also available on Black & Veatch’s thought-leadership microsite: A link to ongoing activities at WEFTEC 2011:

Editor’s Notes:

  • Roundtable participants included government officials; municipal and private water/wastewater utility leaders; financial advisers; technical experts, suppliers; non-profit agency representatives; manufacturers; trade association leaders and academics. They came from the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, India, Ireland, Japan, Puerto Rico, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, The Netherlands, The Philippines, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States
  • The six-part series took place from October 2010 to August 2011 with roundtable discussions in New Orleans, La.; Berlin, Germany; Adelaide, Australia; Stockholm, Sweden; and Washington, D.C. (two sessions).
  • Dan McCarthy will be part of a panel of top water professionals discussing the future of water at an 8 a.m. session on October 18 at WEFTEC. The moderator is former Assistant Administrator for Water at the U.S. EPA, G. Tracy Mehan III, Principal of the Cadmus Group, and the panel also includes Gretchen McClain, President of ITT Fluid and Motion Control, Laurent Auguste, President and CEO of Veolia Water North Americas, David Gray, Managing Director of Global Industrial Services for Credit Suisse, and WEF Executive Director Jeff Eger.
  • Matt Bond, 2010-2011 WEF President-Elect, is an Associate Vice President in Black & Veatch’s global water business.

About Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch is a global leader in the consulting, engineering, construction and operation of what the world needs now and in the future in the crucial areas of energy, water and telecommunications and in providing up-to-the-minute services in the fast changing federal and environmental markets. Founded in 1915, the employee-owned, $2.3 billion company operates out of more than 110 offices worldwide and has completed projects in more than 100 countries.


Formed in 1928, the Alexandria, Va.-based Water Environment Federation (WEF) is a not-for-profit technical and educational organization with 36,000 individual members and 75 affiliated Member Associations representing water quality professionals around the world. WEF and its Member Associations proudly work to achieve our mission of preserving and enhancing the global water environment. WEFTEC—WEF’s Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference—is recognized as the world’s largest annual water quality event and provides the latest technologies and services for water environment preservation, restoration, and sustainability. WEFTEC 2011 is taking place at the Los Angeles Convention Center, October 15-19. Visit and for details.



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