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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact: Lori Harrison, (703) 684-2480
lharrison@wef.org
September 27, 2012

MEDIA ADVISORY: 
October is WATER’S WORTH IT® Month in the City of New Orleans 

Who:    Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the New Orleans City Council have proclaimed October as WATER’S WORTH IT Month in the City of New Orleans. Representatives will officially present the proclamations during the Water Environment Federation’s (WEF) “Bogging in the Big Easy” wetlands construction project this Saturday in City Park. WATER’S WORTH IT Month and the community service project are among several high profile events that will take place as part of WEFTEC® 2012—WEF’s 85th Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference—next week at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center.

What:   WATER’S WORTH IT is a national, broad-based public awareness campaign that helps to answer the questions about how our actions, attitudes, and the things we most value are so closely connected with water. Developed by WEF and supported locally by the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans (SWBNO), WATER’S WORTH IT Month will help educate local citizens about water and provide tips and tools to encourage personal responsibility for this vital resource. It will also help provide context for WEFTEC 2012 and why thousands of water professionals will gather in New Orleans every other year through 2024. As the largest annual water quality conference and exhibition in the world, the five-day event is expected to bring more than 18,000 water professionals, nearly 1,000 exhibiting companies, and generate an estimated $21.1 million in economic impact for the city.

The WATER’S WORTH IT Month proclamations will be presented to WEF President Matt Bond and WEF Executive Director Jeff Eger at the Bogging in the Big Easy community service project in City Park. More than 100 conference volunteers will plant a wetland designed to remove silt and pollutants from rainfall runoff before it reaches surface waters. The wetland will also provide a wildlife habitat and recreational area for park visitors. Hosted by WEF’s Student and Young Professionals Committee, the community service project showcases the dedication of WEF members toward improving the water environment at WEFTEC conference locations through service and environmental education.

Prior to the community service project, WEF leaders and SWBNO Executive Director Marcia St. Martin will honor the dedication and commitment of New Orleans-area water professionals during the Water Heroes Luncheon. Also organized as part of WEFTEC 2012, the special event will take place from 11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m. at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside, Grand Ballroom Suite C.

When:  Proclamation Event: Saturday, September 29, 2012: 2:30-3:00 p.m.; the community service project begins at 9:00 a.m.

Where: City Park, Pelican Greenhouse just before I-610/Railroad overpass  

Why:    Water is inextricably tied to New Orleans culture, economy, and way of life. Although New Orleanians have been challenged by water, it is essential to protect public health, the environment, and quality of life. Thousands of water professionals have dedicated their professional lives to water and work tirelessly to provide these essential services everyday. They are on the front lines for clean water, sometimes quite literally. Did you know that some 300 operators and staff from SWBNO worked around the clock during Hurricane Isaac to keep the pumps running and the city’s water services online? Many of these same operators, despite risks to their personal safety, had also remained at their posts during Hurricane Katrina.

Everyone who uses water is responsible for it. From small everyday actions to the professionals who have dedicated their careers to providing clean and safe water, we must all work together to find innovative and holistic ways to ensure adequate and safe supplies are available to everyone.

That’s where WATER’S WORTH IT comes in. Big things can happen with just a little effort. During the month of October and everyday, WEF and SWBNO are encouraging the people of New Orleans to think about what water’s worth to you, how you can help share this important message, and the small things you can do everyday to help us conserve and protect this precious resource. Our Effort. WATER’S WORTH IT. To learn more, visit www.WatersWorthIt.org.

Note to editors: Media is encouraged to attend all events. Please contact Lori Harrison at 703-216-8565 or lharrison@wef.org for more information.

About WEFTEC 

As the largest annual water quality conference and exhibition in the world, WEFTEC 2012 will be held at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center from September 29 to October 3, 2012. The conference was last held in New Orleans in 2010 and is scheduled to return to the city every other year through 2024. To learn more, visit www.weftec.org.

About WEF 

Founded in 1928, the Water Environment Federation (WEF) is a not-for-profit technical and educational organization of 36,000 individual members and 75 affiliated Member Associations representing water quality professionals around the world. WEF members, Member Associations and staff proudly work to achieve our mission to provide bold leadership, champion innovation, connect water professionals, and leverage knowledge to support clean and safe water worldwide. To learn more, visit www.wef.org.

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