Return to Bangalore (IWA WaterLoss 2016)

I have been keen to post about my glorious return to Bangalore (aka Bengaluru) for a while. My first blog post talked about the influence India had on me, in pursuing a career in the water industry. However, I never went back….that is until January this year, 10 whole years later!

Having been beavering away for the previous 2 years to define my EngD project, I felt confident that I was on the right tracks. This meant it was time to present something to the leading water loss experts and see if they agreed! You might call it serendipity that the International Water Association (IWA) Water Loss conference was taking place in Bangalore this year, and therefore my excuse to go back.

iwawaterloss2016
Bangalore is now officially know as Bengaluru, although all the locals still call it Bangalore. It is a constantly changing urban metropol with a massive focus on IT and technology. Despite the new mass transit system stretching out above the roads, much of it was still recognisable, although there was no longer an M&S in Garuda mall (much to my disappointment!)

One of the many massive malls in Bangalore
One of the many massive malls in Bangalore

The conference

The conference itself was really interesting; as an opportunity to see how different countries view and approach water loss. In one area the major concern might be water loss through illegal connections, whilst in another the overriding concern might be how to report and monitor water loss as a whole. In the UK we are very lucky that we have a safe, potable, 24-hour supply, at an adequate pressure. The cost and access to water means there is less drive for consumers to make an illegal connection. However,  I heard a talk about a city where they do not have 24-hour supply, and the design of the city combined with the age of the buildings, meant that it is not possible to have water tanks on the roof, to store water when there is no piped supply. As such many citizens have created illegal connections and use pumps to draw off the water they need.

On the second day I delivered my own presentation on some work that I had been recently working on. My session was being chaired by Marco Fantozzi, a leader in the field of water loss management and so I was a little bit nervous about presenting my ideas. However, with some good questions and approving nods it seemed that all was well, and I was given a much needed boost to press on with my work.

Presenting on pressure mapping: utilising GIS to localise leak events
Presenting on pressure mapping: utilising GIS to localise leak events

Unfortunately, I wasn’t feeling too well on the afternoon I presented and had to make my way back to the hotel immediately. This meant missing out on the evening entertainment a of traditional dancing and a meal. I didn’t feel much better the next day and ended up missing not only the rest of the conference but also my buddy Joe’s presentation.

Joe presenting at IWA Water Loss 2016
Fellow Stream-er and Sheffield student Joe Butterfield presenting at the conference

…And relax

After all that, it was time for a short (weekend) holiday to Goa. The perfect way to end a short, but sweet to the magical land of India.

Coconuts are the perfect refreshment for a lazy day in Goa
Coconuts are the perfect refreshment for a lazy day in Goa

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