The 2020 edition of Blue Cities was hosted by the Canadian Municipal Water Consortium from June 1 to 4. While the event was originally planned to take person, it was moved to an online platform due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A number of discussions took place over the four days of the virtual event. Some of the sessions and speakers are highlighted below.

Achieving Multiple Benefits by Investing in Water. This plenary session took place on the first day of the event, June 1. The session examined how water management can support cross-sector goals. Speakers in this session included:

  • Bev Yee (Alberta Environment and Parks)
  • John Cuddihy (Infrastructure Canada)
  • Cheryl Nelms (Metro Vancouver)
  • Craig Stewart (Insurance Bureau of Canada)

Balancing Revenue Impacts and Level of Service Demands. This session examined how the COVID-19 pandemic “tested municipal level of service targets.” Speakers in this session included:

  • Cathie O’Toole (Halifax Water)
  • Susan Ancel (EPCOR Water Services)
  • Michael Fenn (Strategy Corp)
  • Monica Silva (City of Guelph)

Engaging with Customers in an Age of Open Data. This session explored the importance of municipal engagement with customers and sharing the right information with customers, while balancing these factors with security and privacy. Speakers in this session included:

  • Carl Yates (Yates Water Management Inc.)
  • Christine Boyle (Xylem)
  • Jim Miller (Utilities Kingston)
  • Thomas Kuczynski (DC Water)

Moving Forward in a New Reality. This closing plenary was hosted by the Canadian Water Network’s Bernadette Conant. She moderated a session that explored what the future of the water sector looks like given the constantly changing social and economic landscapes. Speakers in this session included:

  • Albert Cho (Xylem)
  • George Hawkins (Moonshot Missions)
  • Usha Rao-Monari (Blackstone Infrastructure Group)

Header Image Credit: Canadian Water Network.


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