Bringing Water into the 21st Century: Managing Water with Open Data

By Gordon Feller

Gordon Feller is the Co-Founder of Meeting of the Minds, a global thought leadership network and knowledge-sharing platform focused on the future of sustainable cities, innovation and technology.

Jun 30, 2016 | Announcements | 0 comments

I chaired a session during the 4th Annual Silicon Valley Energy & Sustainability Summit organized by The Silicon Valley Leadership Group.

This special program convened on June 30th at Oracle Headquarters in Redwood City, California. The overarching theme was built around this question: "What’s Next After Paris & What’s In Store For California?"

Meeting the goals laid out in the Paris agreement signed in December 2015 will require new technologies, new policies and new financing – and, even then, the successful transition to clean energy will be quite difficult.

In seeking to meet the needs of residents, businesses and the environment, California lacks a comprehensive and accurate way to assess the water use and supply under its management responsibility.  The State of California currently lacks the water data, or the widely adopted practices and technologies, which will enable better water management by its own governmental agencies.  In addition, water infrastructure throughout the state is aging and in need of repair, numerous communities are without safe water, and many suffer from unreliable and degraded water supplies.

This 60-minute panel session featured a vigorous discussion of the various policies, technologies and practices that help California identify and remedy the problems it faces, while fostering innovation to address our most basic needs. As you might expect from anything involving Meeting of the Minds, there was a special focus on data and information systems.

The panelists who joined me on stage were these four leaders:

Tim D. Anderson

Goverment Affairs Manager Sonoma County Water Agency

Bill Dodd

Assemblymember California State Assembly Author of AB 1755, The Open and Transparent Water Data Act

Dominique Gómez

Director of Operations and Market Development WaterSmart Software

Jeff Neeman

Water Sector Lead for Smart Integrated Infrastructure and Director of Water Treatment Technology Black & Veatch


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