Most of the Stormwater team is in Anaheim this week at StormCon. I’m taking a quick break from the activity here on Tuesday morning to report on what’s happening so far. Attendance is strong, the exhibit hall is open, and the first presentations got underway just a couple of hours ago.
The photos (taken by Forester’s own Mike Ashby) are from this morning’s opening session. Sponsored by AbTech Industries, the session featured keynote speaker Gloria Rueben, who appeared on many seasons of television’s ER and is now in her second season of the series Raising the Bar. As AbTech president Glenn Rink noted in his introduction, “Raising the Bar” could well be the theme for this year’s conference, as well, with many new and innovative products on the market and, in his experience, more inquiries about stormwater treatment coming in from more places around the world than ever before.
|AbTech President Glenn Rink, Keynote Speaker Gloria Rueben, and Forester Media Publisher, Dan Waldman
Gloria is also vice chair for the board of trustees of Waterkeeper Alliance. As some of you who have attended StormCon in the past may remember, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., one of the founders of the Waterkeeper Alliance, has given the keynote address at StormCon twice (although as Gloria pointed out in her speech, we were lucky to have her instead this time because she’s better looking). She addressed a wide range of water-related issues—not only the effects of stormwater runoff on surface water quality, but also drought, deforestation, and other climate-change-related problems that Waterkeeper and other groups are addressing. Raising public awareness is part of that organization’s mission as well as hers personally, and she’s an advocate for human rights and HIV/AIDS awareness as well as environmental causes.
The conference goes on for two more days, with well over 100 presentations still to be given in the six conference tracks: BMP Case Studies, Low-Impact Development, Stormwater Program Management, Water-Quality Monitoring, Advanced Research Topics, and Source Control.
The quality of the presentations I’ve seen so far has been outstanding. We also have our annual BMP discussion panel still to come (tomorrow morning) and a “Talk Back to the EPA” question-and-answer session (Thursday morning). If you aren’t here but are anywhere near southern California and would still like to join us, we’re at the Anaheim Marriott - there’s still time to get in on the conference.