On May 13th, the Water Institute hosted the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands along with representatives from Royal HaskoningDHV. Shortly following Dutch Heritage Day, marked on May 4th, we took the opportunity to celebrate the many connections we have with The Netherlands, one of Canada’s most significant trade, investment and innovation partners.
Jorn Leeksma, Deputy Consul-General, provided a brief overview Dutch – Canadian relations, including a shared WW2 history and significant trade, investment and innovation partnerships. Mr. Leeksma noted the strong connections between the University of Waterloo and the Dutch higher education sector and the particular importance of co-operation in the water domain.
Ian Rowlands, Associate Vice-President, International welcomed the Dutch delegation and introduced Waterloo’s research, education and innovation infrastructure, including the role of research institutes. Dr. Rowlands highlighted existing connections with Dutch universities, noting impressive student mobility and collaborative publications metrics.
“The Water Institute is pleased to welcome the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Waterloo. We are excited to explore opportunities to further strengthen and expand collaboration with our Dutch counterparts in addressing important water security issues,” said Roy Brouwer, executive director of the Water Institute.
In an example of existing collaboration, Danny Traksel, from the Dutch engineering consultancy Royal HaskoningDHV, then updated the delegation on a current pilot project with the Region of Waterloo, the Ontario Clean Water Agency and the University of Waterloo demonstrating the innovative Ephyra® technology for wastewater sludge digestion. Water Institute member Wayne Parker, professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, is providing an independent third-party assessment of the performance of the Ephyra digester at a Region of Waterloo wastewater treatment plant.
Thank you to all who joined us, we look forward to collaborating.
From left to right: Ian Rowlands, Wayne Parker, Kevin Boehmer, Roy Brouwer, Mary Anne Hardy, Eddie Koorneef, Nancy Goucher, Danny Traksel, Valerie Sels, Hugo van Gool, Marjan Lahuis, Jorn Leeksma