Gold for Storm at Stormwater16!
The Stormwater Industry Association’s Biennial Conference has wrapped up and the team from Storm are safely back in their respective states making the most of the experience.
And wow, what an experience. There were some outstanding Keynote speakers like Kim Stephens, the Executive Director for the Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia, Canada who highlighted the differences in our two countries. He also touched on the alliance and slow shift in thinking towards reducing the quantity of stormwater in our network. Then on the flip side we had speakers like Rachel Robertson, an inspirational Keynote that reminded us all not to sweat the small stuff. Avoid the Bacon Wars she hails! (Of course that will make more sense if you look her up).
Every day there were four concurrent streams covering topics like strategies, policies, modelling, design, case-studies and new product lines. Speakers came from consultancies, councils, academia and the marketplace, adding to the diversity and feel of the conference. But we think it was our Principal Engineer Rod Wiese who stole the show with his presentation on “Why Best Practice is Destroying our Waterways”. It drew a majority of the congregation in with his catchy title and content. His talk complimented Kim Stephens in that it focused on the quantity of stormwater reaching our waterways. The current practices have been so focused on water quality, that the damage done with high flows with long peaks are becoming long term. We find that often if you deal with the quantity, the water quality is covered! As an organisation this is our bandwagon and we hope to see more people jumping on board!
Overall we found that the event was well organised by GEMS events and very well attended from a broad industry cross-section of landscape architects, engineers, strategists, planners and suppliers from management to juniors. Some familiar faces and some new ones to meet and engage. A great supplier expo further expanded the knowledge bank and supported the industries growth and innovation. The chosen venue, Marriot Gold Coast, was well presented and catered for everyone with plenty of areas to network, mingle or even have a quiet chat. It made our Gold Sponsorship very satisfying and well worth our investment to support such a wonderful and innovative industry!
Thanks for having us!