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Singapore utility officials tour EPWater


They are worlds apart, but El Paso Water shares common ground with their counterparts in Singapore in water reuse developments.

Three representatives of PUB, Singapore's National Water Agency, visited El Paso on Aug. 7 to study El Paso Water's advances in water reuse and to learn more about the Advanced Water Purification Facility. The representatives toured the Fred Hervey Water Reclamation Plant, 11700 Railroad.

"Largely, Singapore is viewed as a leader in water reuse across the world, so for them to come to El Paso and to want to learn from us is a real honor," said Gilbert Trejo, utility chief technical officer.

Dr. Mong Hoo Lim, chief specialist of PUB Water Quality, microbiologist Ervia Huang and Jireh Yew, senior planner, exchanged information with El Paso Water about their water reuse programs, Trejo said. PUB representatives said they were impressed by what they saw.

"We learned that EPWater has a great public engagement program and is being very proactive in engaging the key stakeholders and the media," Huang said. "It was indeed a fruitful visit." PUB officials, including Lim, first visited EPWater in 2015 to seek information on reclaimed water.

"We learned that there really are some differences in how we are both approaching water reuse," Trejo said.

El Paso Water frequently fields inquiries from other national and international utilities, often seeking information not only about water reuse, but the methods in which the company provides water to the City of El Paso. EPWater officials welcome those requests and see opportunities to learn from others.

"All of these water companies and utilities across the world are just trying to provide clean drinking water to their customers and their residents, so we are all in the same boat," Trejo said. "There is like a brotherhood between all of us."

"We freely share information because they could take something that we are doing, advance it and come back and teach us what they did with our information," he said.