EPA, WHO help countries deliver safe drinking water

EPA, WHO help countries deliver safe drinking water

ISSN 0958-2118 April 2006 www.filtsep.com General Electric agrees to acquire Zenon Environmental to target municipal water GE Water & Process Technol...

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ISSN 0958-2118 April 2006 www.filtsep.com

General Electric agrees to acquire Zenon Environmental to target municipal water GE Water & Process Technologies, a unit of US giant General Electric, is acquiring Canadian membrane firm Zenon Environmental. Under the terms of the agreement, GE will acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of Zenon and the non-voting Class A shares for C$24.00 in cash. Zenon option holders will be eligible to receive C$24.00 cash, less the exercise price of the respective option. Over its 26-year history, Zenon has developed ultrafiltration technology for water and wastewater treatment. The company says that UF has become the technology of choice for water and wastewater plants, and its adaptation is spreading rapidly throughout the world. ‘Zenon is a great strategic fit with GE,’ says David Calhoun, GE Vice Chairman and

President, and Chief Executive Officer of GE Infrastructure. ‘With the synergies we create, we will have the potential to grow revenue in the municipal water segment at more than 30% for the next several years.’ He continues. ‘Its best-in-class membrane technologies will allow GE to serve the fastgrowing UF segment of water and wastewater treatment, significantly expand our capabilities to help customers address pressing water scarcity issues, and play a key role in the high-growth areas of the municipal water segment. With this terrific addition, we anticipate our water platform will grow to nearly US$2.5 billion in revenue next year.’ Andrew Benedek, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Zenon Environmental,

says: ‘This transaction will benefit both our customers and GE’s customers. Our advanced membranes and talented team, combined with GE’s technology, scale, strong global network and services expertise, will open up new global opportunities for our UF technology.’ The transaction is to be effected by way of a statutory Plan of Arrangement, and will require the approval of Zenon’s security holders. Contacts: General Electric Company, 3135 Easton Turnpike, Fairfield, CT 06828-0001, USA. Tel: +1 203 373 2211, www.gewater.com Zenon Environmental Inc, 3239 Dundas Street West, Oakville, Ontario L6J 4Z3, Canada. Tel: +1 905 465 3030, www.zenon.com

EPA, WHO help countries deliver safe drinking water Two major organizations are working together to help countries around the world deliver safe drinking water and improve sanitation. More than 3bn people worldwide each year suffer from water-related diseases that can be fatal, and mostly affect children under the age of five. In response to this challenge, the US Environmental Protection Agency joined with the World Health Organization and others at the recent Fourth World Water Forum (4WWF) in Mexico City, to launch the ‘WSPortal’ Internet resource. The portal aims to assist countries in delivering safe drinking water to their citizens by using Water Safety Plans (WSPs), health-based risk assessments that identify problems in a water system and chart corrective actions to take. ‘I am pleased that the US can now announce a new tool for countries to address a very serious global problem,’ says Judith Ayres, EPA Assistant Administrator for the Office of International Affairs. ‘For countries to move forward in providing a better life for their citizens, clean water and adequate sanitation are essential first steps.’ The portal – on the WHO website – represents the first step in the widespread dissemination of

best practices for delivering safe drinking water through the use of WSPs. This ‘catchment to consumer’ approach allows countries to catch problems with a water system before they contaminate drinking water and cause illness. It also highlights the best opportunities for potential donors and investors to select projects to fund that would have the largest positive impact on water safety. The EPA has also provided initial financial assistance to develop the website, and is involved in WSP demonstration projects in Jamaica and India. Other launch participants include the World Bank Water & Sanitation Program, Australian Agency for International Development, UK Department of International Development, New Zealand Ministry of Health, International Water Association, and Water for People. Contacts: Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460, USA. Tel: +1 202 272 0167, www.epa.gov World Health Organization, Avenue Appia 20, CH-1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland. Tel: +41 22 791 2111, www.who.int/wsportal

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Contents News In Brief

1–6 3, 5, 6

Features: Materials improvement furthers the development of miniature fuel cells 7–8

Advances in membrane separation technologies can help achieve clean energy goals 8–9 Clean coal company uses VSEP filtration system to recycle process water

9–10

Research Trends

10–12

Patents

12–16

Events Calendar

15