ISRAEL – India’s national government is looking to Israel for its expertise in water management and recycling. Last week, officials from India took steps toward developing a wide-ranging partnership with their Israeli counterparts. India’s Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Israel’s Ministry of National Infrastructure, Energy, and Water Resources. And the state utility, Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam, also signed an MoU with the Israeli ministry.
To mark the occasion, Narendra Modi has travelled to Israel, becoming the first Indian Prime Minister to visit the Middle Eastern country. Modi and Benjamin Netanyahu joined each other for several discussions as well as a demonstration of seawater desalination by the Gal-Mobile vehicle at Dor beach. The Gal-Mobile is designed to produce potable water during natural disasters, such as floods and earthquakes, and it may be used by military personnel in rugged terrain.
BARBADOS – The Barbados Water Authority has signed a multi-million-dollar agreement with Caribbean Development Bank to help finance two desalination projects. Officials at BWA have sought expressions of interest for two facilities that produce 30,000 cubic metres per day—as well as feed water wells, effluent disposal wells, buildings, chlorination systems, and potable water reservoirs. These projects would augment the water supply of the island nation, one of the most water scarce places on earth.
SPAIN – The CEO of Almar Water Solutions, Carlos Cosín, has proposed the creation of a new Masters in Water degree to rectify what he has identified as a skills gap in the water industry. The Master’s degree would focus on teaching students project management and business skills that are specific to the water industry. For instance students would learn the intricacies pertaining to finance, law, and regulation for water infrastructure.
Several universities have already sent proposals to Cosín for the degree. It is expected that the course would begin enrolling students in 2019.
AUSTRALIA – Aquasure has failed to meet its full water order for the Victoria Desalination Plant in Melbourne. Damage to switchgear this past January diminished the plant’s ability to fulfill the order for 50 million cubic metres of water (falling short by a total of 4 million cubic metres). Water Minister Lisa Neville has said that the government would reduce the company’s payment by $2 million to $25 million, while also reducing other pre-determined contractual expenses.
 “PM Modi Sees Desalination Plant Demonstration in Israel,” Economic Times, July 6, 2017, <http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/pm-modi-sees-desalination-plant-demonstration-in-israel/articleshow/59474027.cms> accessed July 1, 2017.
 “Modi in Israel: PM witnesses pioneering water desalination technique with Netanyahu,” Hindustan Times, July 6, 2017, <http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/pm-modi-sees-desalination-plant-demonstration-in-israel/articleshow/59474027.cms> accessed July 6, 2017.
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