More than 20,000 attended the 89th annual conference and exhibition
An impressive turnout of 20,113 registrants and 1,006 exhibitors using 301,900 net sq ft of space placed WEFTEC 2016 within the top five largest and best-attended events in the conference’s 89-year history. The Water Environment Federation’s (WEF) 89th annual technical exhibition and conference was held Sept. 24 to 28 at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.
WEFTEC has long been the springboard for new and innovative products, ideas and initiatives, and WEFTEC 2016 was no exception.
Notable highlights include:
- The installation of green infrastructure on the grounds of New Orleans City Hall during the ninth annual Community Service Project;
- Exciting discussions and knowledge exchange during the Great Water Cities session, Women in Water breakfast, and countless workshops, technical sessions and networking events;
- The fifth annual Innovation Showcase, which included the return of the popular Sustainable Beer Smackdown, the Operator Ingenuity contest and the unveiling of the Water Reuse Roadmap Primer; and
- The recognition of 61 Utility of the Future Today recipients for exceptional performance in sustainable water management and operations.
The world’s largest annual water quality conference also was the launch pad for the ongoing #mywaterlegacy social media campaign, designed to highlight and promote the tradition of working in the water sector, the importance of mentorship and membership, and the essential work of water professionals.
“Those of us who have made water our chosen profession have also chosen to work together to create a solid foundation for the future—a future that’s built on clean and safe water,” said Paul Bowen, 2015 to 2016 WEF President, as he introduced the campaign during the Opening General Session. “As water professionals, we are uniquely positioned to make a positive, lasting impact on this magnificent world we share. It’s something to be inspired by and immensely proud of.”
“The success of this year’s conference reflects WEFTEC’s decades-long tradition of innovation, education and dedication,” said WEF Executive Director Eileen O’Neill. “From programming to attendance, WEFTEC 2016 was another outstanding chapter in WEFTEC’s history.”
Planning for next year’s event in Chicago, which will commemorate WEFTEC’s 90th anniversary, is already underway. More than 850 companies have reserved nearly 300,000 net sq ft of space at McCormick Place, and the 2017 Call for Abstracts will open Friday, Oct. 21. Submissions will be accepted through Dec. 1, 2016.
WEFTEC 2017 will be held Sept. 30 to Oct. 1, 2017, at McCormick Place in Chicago. Registration and housing will open in spring 2017. For more details, visit www.weftec.org.
For complete WEFTEC 2016 highlights and coverage please see the online editions of the WEFTEC Daily.