The inaugural North American Water Loss (NAWL) Conference was held on December 8th and 9th 2015. The verbal and written feedback on the conference affirms that the conference was a resounding success. 501 delegates from 15 countries and 40 states and provinces in the U.S. and Canada joined together for this 2-day event to advance the Non-Revenue Water conversation in North America. 52% of the delegates represented water utilities.
Over the 2-day event, the program delivered 60 expert speakers in two Technical Session tracks and one Learning Module track. While the attendance in each of the rooms was balanced, some were standing room only. The Exhibit Hall was sold out with 42 companies exhibiting their services and offerings for addressing Non-Revenue Water. Keynote speakers from Georgia to California brought resilient messages of support for advancing Non-Revenue Water in our industry.
The social and networking elements of the conference included an Exhibit Hall reception and dinner event on the evening of the first day. These social and networking activities allowed deeper conversations between attendees and exhibitors. The conference dinner was hosted onsite which assured attendees stayed engaged throughout the course of the evening. After dinner came the evening’s highlight – a rousing rendition of Have a Little Help from My Friends – the ‘water loss’ version, led by Alan Wyatt.
Feedback during the conference was enthusiastic. The energy level remained high throughout, based on the strength of the technical content and the conference attendance. Many attendees commented how NAWL brought a level of content, networking and overall environment that surpassed any previous conference experience.
The Technical Program with direct links to the presentations can be found here:
Photographs, exhibitors, and even a video of the water loss song can be found here:
The success of NAWL was built on the hard work of a dedicated planning committee, who began discussions for the event several years ago and initiated coordinated organizing efforts in mid-2014. This planning committee was made up of industry leaders from many areas – utilities, regulators, consultants and advocates. Once registration opened in summer of 2015, the numbers built steadily from there due to a wide and concerted outreach effort through all the partnering organizations – local, regional, national and international.
The NAWL planning committee is already looking ahead, and NAWL 2017 will likely be sited in California. We expect NAWL 2017 to be even more successful than this incredibly impactful inaugural event.
Will Jernigan, P.E.
Chair – NAWL 2015 Conference