The nonprofit’s 100-plus members include the region’s universities, many of its cities and the likes of Qualcomm and Cisco, Ernst & Young and the Toronto Stock Exchange, Scripps Institution of Oceanography and venture capital firms, and a number of technology and energy startups.
Two water utilities are also members — Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, the largest water utility in the United States, and Helix Water District. I asked Helix Facilities Manager Joe Garuba, who helps support sustainability initiatives within the district, to explain.
Joe, why did Helix join Cleantech?
Our board asked us to join over the summer and we did. Cleantech’s meetings are a good place for conversations on how to leverage advancing technologies to achieve sustainability in the region. They are the crossroads of the private sector, education, utilities and government, and they have established themselves across the region.
You and Helix Director of Operations Kevin Miller presented recently at Cleantech’s board of directors meeting. Why?
They asked us to present because we are at the front of the curve on water agency sustainability. We can also serve as a technical resource for the other members and provide opportunities for proof-of-concept projects. Since Cleantech members represent a variety of businesses, Helix has an opportunity to share its expertise with a broad cross-section of organizations.
Helix is seen as a regional leader in water. We bring a lot to the table from the water world, because we manage and operate both water treatment and water distribution systems. Engaging with Cleantech also helps fulfill our mission statement – to be a progressive industry leader. This means not just setting the bar but moving it forward in a cost-effective manner.