The 10th annual conference of the Pacific Water and Wastewater Association (P.W.W.A.) is set to kick off tomorrow at the Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey’s Hotel in Apia.
The meeting starts with a programme for young water professionals from around the Pacific.
The 10th Annual Pacific Water Conference and Expo as well as the 3rd Pacific Water Ministerial Forum is officially set to open on Tuesday with a traditional ava ceremony.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Apia-based P.W.W.A, Pitolau Lusia Sefo Leau, confirms that a little over 300 participants are registered to attend for all the events - considerably more than previous years.
Participants include foreign ministers attending the Pacific Water Ministerial Forum, delegations from water and wastewater member utilities from around the Pacific, P.W.W.A’s development partner representatives, young water professionals from around the Pacific region, a decent line-up of technical speakers, experts, professionals, companies, contractors, and providers and suppliers in the water and wastewater sectors from around the world.
The Chair of the Conference Organising Committee and the Managing Director of the Samoa Water Authority (S.W.A.), Seugamaalii Jammie Saena, is confident S.W.A. and co-host organisations will deliver on the expectations for an efficient, effective and valuable conference. S.W.A, Water and Sanitation Sector of M.N.R.E. and the Samoa Independent Water Schemes Association will look to showcase Samoa’s natural hospitality, and a growing reputation as an excellent conference/event host.
The theme of this year’s annual conference is “Water supply in a Changing Environment.” This directly recognizes the increasing threats of climate variability, climate change and natural disasters and its impacts on safe and sustainable water and adequate sanitation for Pacific nations.
Speakers lined up for the different sessions will impart experiences, research, scientific findings, solutions, innovations and best practices to various water and wastewater challenges under this broad theme.
Showcasing products, innovations, and solutions in the water and wastewater sectors are the various companies, suppliers, contractors, and experts that supply to the Pacific countries, or work with the various countries in the Pacific and elsewhere.
Bringing together the different players in these sectors aims to build goodwill, understanding of the specific risks and challenges in the Pacific region, while also fostering collaborative efforts in building the capacities of the Pacific community, public utilities and organisations to better serve the water and sanitation needs of the people of the Pacific.
Debuting in this year’s annual conference is a special programme for Young Water Professionals from the P.W.W.A. member utilities.
The programme sponsored by the Department of Foreign Affairs of Australia through the Australian Water Partnership brings together about 30 young professionals to be a part of the Conference.
The programme aims to mentor, inspire and build the future leaders capacity in the water and wastewater sector by bringing them together to share with their peers and to learn from current leaders and various experts in the sector.
A prominent event during the week is the 3rd Pacific Water Ministers Forum to be held on Tuesday straight after the opening.
Chairing this year’s Water Ministerial Forum is Samoa’s Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Papaliitele Niko Lee Hang.
Ministers aim to discuss and affirm the strategic direction and focus of the annual Pacific Water Ministers Forum as part of the regional infrastructure to better deliver on the 2030 S.D.Gs.
They will share their respective countries progress with achieving the S.D.G. targets and explore areas where collaboration and partnerships might best contribute to the Pacific’s progress towards achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal 6 drinking water and sanitation targets.
The week-long conference events will culminate with a gala event hosted by P.W.W.A. where the Pacific awards will be given based on performance of all utilities against various benchmarked criteria.
There will also be recognition awards for individuals in the water and wastewater sector who have made a significant contribution to the sector in the Pacific.
The full programme of the Conference is available on the P.W.W.A. website at www.pwwa.ws. P.W.W.A. promises to keep the public informed of proceedings through regular updates on the P.W.W.A. website and through the media.