Water is a finite resource. Even though 70% of our planet is covered by water, only 4% is fresh water. Of this fresh water, 98% is tied up in ice and glaciers and underground aquifers, leaving only 2% readily available in lakes and rivers. This is only 0.08 percent of the world water supply. This relative scarcity of fresh water is exacerbated by the inefficiency of water distribution – it’s not always where it’s needed and expensive to transport. This was highlighted most recently by Hurricane Harvey which dropped 15 trillion gallons of fresh water on the Gulf Coast while 8 million acres of forest land was burning out of control in the Rockies. The biggest consumers of fresh water are:
1. Agriculture – 69% worldwide, 86% in Colorado
3. Residential and Municipal
The water crisis is real!
This month’s New Tech Longmont panel discussion will focus on Water Technology – what is currently in use and what is needed in the future to allow us to more efficiently use our water and to recycle whenever feasible. Whether you’re just interested in this critical topic, or looking for opportunities to make an impact in an essential industry, this panel discussion will provide valuable information and insight.
Sean Cronin is the Executive Director for the St. Vrain and Left Hand Water Conservancy District. He has 20+ years’ experience in water resource planning and policy. Sean earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Science from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and spent two years as a Natural Resources Agent with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service before moving to Colorado. Prior to joining the District, Sean spent 13 years with the City of Greeley, including the last six as their Water Resources Manager.
Sean serves on the Interbasin Compact Committee (IBCC), is the past chair of the South Platte Basin Roundtable, and serves on the Loveland Utilities Commission. Sean is a recipient of the Colorado Foundation for Water Education – Emerging Leader Award, and under Sean’s direction his District received a Collaboration Award from the Special District Association.
Sean lives in his adopted home of Colorado with his wife and two children. When Sean isn’t spending time with family and other activities, you can find him on a river trying to master the art of making a trout rise.
Mara MacKillop is the Public Engagement Specialist at the Colorado Water Conservation Board – a state agency in the Department of Natural Resources. She is also the project director of TAP-IN Colorado, a statewide reverse pitch innovation program. TAP-IN aims to connect the specific water challenges we face in Colorado with the right people to help solve them. Using a reverse pitch model, end users from the water sector pitch their challenges to the entrepreneurial, innovation, and business communities, equipping them with valuable insight into real needs, while revealing potential open markets prime for entrepreneurial solutions.
Steve Malers is CTO of the Open Water Foundation (OWF), a nonprofit social enterprise that is working to provide an open source software platform to help organizations make better decisions about water. Steve is also Founder and CTO of Trilynx System, a for-profit that does real-time data collection and flood warning systems.
Dr. Stephen Smith is an agricultural and water resources engineer, specializing in irrigation system design and water rights. He is the founder of Aqua Engineering, a past president and board member of the Irrigation Association, a board member of Louden Irrigating Canal and Reservoir Company (diverting from the Big Thompson River), and a member of the Water Scarcity Advisory Board with the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research in D.C.
Dr. Locket Wood is Founder and CEO of Avivid Water Technology llc in Longmont. Avivid uses its patented TurboCoag© Electrocoagulation Wastewater Treatment to remove contaminants from waste water, allowing it to be recycled. Sources of contaminants include oil and gas fracking, mining, poultry & dairy farms and industrial laundries.