It was a dazzling celebration of water leadership and innovation. On June 23, Water Canada celebrated it 2016 Water’s Next winners and nominees at a gala awards ceremony in Toronto.  The Water’s Next Award program is the only national awards program to honour leadership across the entire water sector—including public servants, non-governmental groups, researchers, municipalities, and technology providers. Since 2010, Water Canada has hosted the awards to help strengthen and celebrate the thriving national community by showcasing Canada’s water leaders, champions, and innovators. With 45 submissions and nine award categories, the winner’s were announced on June 23 at the Water’s Next Award’s Dinner.

Announcing the 2016 Water’s Next award winners:

People Category

Business: Pat Whalen, President & CEO of LuminUltra Technologies Ltd.

Pat Whalen is one of New Brunswick’s leading entrepreneurs dedicated to helping expand New Brunswick’s biotechnology sector. The company’s customer base and sales network spans from North America to Asia and all points in-between. LuminUltra achieves water savings by reducing flushing times and field service and it achieves substantial improvements in manpower efficiency and overall operation quality.

Young Professional: Christine Harries, of SNC-Lavalin

Christine Harries specializes in working closely with water process engineers to provide optimal building structure designs for both wastewater plants and drinking water production all over the Greater Montreal area. She is currently the President of the Association of Consulting Engineers of Canada’s (ACEC) Young Professional Network. She is on the board of directors of the Quebec division, named “FORUM’’ and has organized many conferences and networking activities for Montrealers.

Academia/NGO: The Chiefs of Keewaytinook Okimakanak – Safe Water Project

To address the water challenges facing their communities (including chronic and persistent boil water advisories), the six Chiefs of Keewaytinook Okimakanak envisioned the Safe Water Project—an innovative approach to delivering clean drinking water to First Nations. The Chiefs recognized that the only lasting solution to resolving First Nations’ water challenges is one that empowers communities to manage their own water.

Government:  François Soulard, Environment Division at Statistics Canada

Francois Soulard has been working at Statistics Canada since 1997 in the field of environmental statistics and environmental accounting, with a special emphasis on water statistics and ecosystem goods and services statistics. For the last eight years he has held the position of chief of the research and development section. “François has been working for over fifteen years in the development and improvement of water statistics in Canada and internationally, said Mark Henry, a member of Statistics Canada’s Environmental Accounts and Statistics program.  “He has developed, overseen and promoted new and innovative methods and standards for estimating, measuring, and analyzing our water resources and their use.” Soulard said that he could not accept the award without crediting his team.

Technology Category

Drinking Water: SanEcoTec Ltd for its AVIVE Water Technology

Jim Shubat, founder and chief technology officer accepted the award for SanEcoTec. The AVIVE dosing and monitoring technology is integrated with an existing water treatment process to inject hydrogen peroxide to stop the formation of disinfection by-products, and to provide an effective secondary disinfectant residual in distribution.

Wastewater: Ostara for the Pearl Nutrient Recovery

The Pearl Nutrient Recovery is a technology responding to the shift in view of wastewater treatment facilities where water, energy, and nutrients are now recaptured and Ostara’s Pearl nutrient is a technology in-recovery process. The innovative closed-loop solution, which was developed at the University of British Columbia, recovers phosphorus and nitrogen at municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plants and transforms them into a highly valuable and eco-friendly fertilizer called Crystal Green.

Stormwater: Imbrium Systems, Stormceptor MAX.

Reagan Davidson, manager of Ontario, Eastern Canada, and Europe from Imbrium Systems accepted the award at the 2016 gala. Imbrium’s Stormceptor MAX is a customized storm water treatment device is especially equipped to treat runoffs from large areas because of its flexible modular design that fits different site requirements. The device has been used by the City of Toronto to treat runoff on its waterfront to protect Lake Ontario, as well as by the City of Kitchener and in the Alberta oil sands.

Water Resources: Aquatics Informatics, for its AQUARIUS system.

AJ Leitch, VP of customer success at Aquatic Informatics accepted the award on behalf of the company. AQUARIUS captures data streaming off sensors in rivers, lakes, reservoirs, groundwater, and in-pipes, and alerts customers on exceedances or unusual events. With the AQUARIUS software, users have access to big data right at their fingertips. The software centrally stores, secures, and provides access control to data. Customers then use highly specialized tools to assess the validity and quality of the data in order to complete analytics, generate reports, and share with stakeholders. The data is then used in a multitude of ways—from assessing water quality and treatment effectiveness to determining pollution concentrations and the likelihood of flooding or droughts.


Photo's taken at the 2016 Water's Next Gala
Photo’s taken at the 2016 Water’s Next Gala. Credit: Eve Krakow


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