International Business Briefs: water, water everywhere; energy efficiency; and software

In this week’s International Business Briefs, buying and selling of water and wastewater businesses, the treatment of wastewater from a cruise liner, updated water modelling software, and energy and water efficiency training for building managers.


In the world of water, the North American USFilter, owned by Vivendi Environment, has announced that it has signed an agreement to sell its waterworks distribution business to a company jointly owned by JPMorgan Partners, the private equity arm of JP Morgan Chase & Co, and Thomas H Lee Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm for US$620 million. The sale furthers USFilter’s strategy to divest non-core assets and focus on its water-wastewater equipment and services businesses and consumer and commercial businesses.

Whilst on the subject of wastewater, the Canadian Hydroxyl Systems has announced that it has been working closely with cruise company Royal Caribbean to facilitate their environmental mandate for wastewater treatment on the ship, the Vision of the Seas. According to Hydroxyl Systems, the project has proved that its technology effectively supports the environmentally-conscious mandate of Royal Caribbean, surpassing both the International Maritime Organisation and Alaskan HB260 regulations. There is no sludge discharge at sea.

California-based Southwest Water Company has announced the acquisition of the majority of AquaSource Inc’s water and wastewater contract operations business for an expected purchase price, after adjustments, to exceed US$10 million. The acquisition includes AquaSource’s contract operations in Colorado and the Houston, Texas area.

Commercial facility operators and building managers can significantly reduce their costs for electricity, fossil fuels and water by completing courses in building energy performance, says Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships. The findings are the result of an evaluation of the Building Operator Training and Certification (BOC) programme, launched in 2000. The scheme has now trained more than 500 students and certified over 425 of them in energy efficient building performance.

And finally, US-based Haestad Methods has launched its latest version of WaterCAD, described as the most widely used water distribution modelling software in the world. The new Version 6.0 has been developed from requests by customers and features what the company describes as “cutting-edge open database architecture, complete customisation capability, and an easy-to-use interface.”

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