Field Notes -- Americas

Regional: The World Bank report “Infrastructure in Latin America and the Caribbean: Recent Developments and Key Challenges,” by economists Marianne Fay and Mary Morrison contends the region needs better infrastructure to compete with Asia.

Regional: The World Bank report “Infrastructure in Latin America and the Caribbean: Recent Developments and Key Challenges,” by economists Marianne Fay and Mary Morrison contends the region needs better infrastructure to compete with Asia. The report revealed that governments in the region are spending less than two percent of gross domestic product (GDP) on infrastructure, down from 3.7 percent of GDP in 1980-1985. Water and sanitation, however, fared comparatively well with access to safe water increasing from 82 percent of the population in 1990 to 89 percent in 2002.

The study presents new World Bank research that says improving the region's infrastructure to the level of Korea could result in annual per capita growth gains of 1.4 to 1.8 percent of GDP, as well as reducing inequality by 10 to 20 percent. The poor benefit from infrastructure expansion both because gaining safe water, electricity and other services improves health and quality of life, and also because it helps them advance economically.

USA: Biwater USA, a subsidiary of the UK company Biwater Plc, acquired Advanced Environmental Water Technologies, Inc. (AEWT), a supplier of advanced membrane systems. Following the acquisition the company will pursue opportunities in the US market and internationally under its new trade name Biwater AEWT. The company will continue to operate from its office in Pasadena, California, but will be based in Miami, Florida.

According to Biwater Chief Executive Officer Larry Major, the acquisition will enable Biwater to expand its business profile and become a significant global player in the application of advanced membrane separation technologies. Biwater and AEWT will be able to provide clients with integrated design and project management solutions for complete treatment schemes.

USA: In September 2005 Infilco Degremont, Inc. became the exclusive licensee of Hydroxyl iFAS™ (integrated fixed film activated sludge) and iMBR™ (integrated moving bed bioreactors) systems for design, supply and installation in US municipal plants over 0.5 mgd.

Both processes use Hydroxyl iPAC™ media, which are fluidized biomass carriers that increase capacity, enhance the treatment process by reducing BOD and COD, and improve removal of ammonia and nitrogen- all without physical plant expansion. Incorporating the now-named IDI Hydroxyl iPAC technology, in most cases iFAS and iMBR systems can be upgraded by using existing basins.

Infilco Degremont will provide complete in-house design, engineering, project management, and marketing for municipal systems using IDI’s Hydroxyl iPAC technology in the USA. Based in Victoria, British Columbia, Hydroxyl Systems Inc. specializes in comprehensive advanced water treatment solutions for industrial, municipal, marine, and domestic applications.

Infilco Degremont, Inc. is a member of the Degrémont Group, S.A., part of Suez Environment.Copy.

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