The American Water Works Association (AWWA) announced on 27 February 2012 that it had launched a Desalination Community, a page on its website for networking and exchanging ideas.

AWWA president Jerry Stevens commended the site to the delegates at the AWWA/AMTA Membrane Technology Conference 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona, when he welcomed them in the opening session.

The Desalination Community is the third in AWWA’s series of online communities, usable by AWWA members and parties outside the association. Community web pages are dedicated to resources such as news, research, forums, products, tools and events.

“Each community is tailored to highlight the relevant news and activities in a specific topic,” said Ken Mercer, AWWA standards engineer, who is spearheading the project. “AWWA members have been clear in what they want — quick and easy access to AWWA’s wealth of information and an area for them to learn and become professionally active.”

The online communities highlight AWWA resources but are not limited exclusively to them (though you won’t find a link to D&WR yet, the International Desalination Association’s other publication, the Journal, is linked). AWWA membership will afford free access to certain resources, established under existing member benefits, for which non-members will have to pay.

AWWA councils, divisions and committees will provide input and guidance, but in each AWWA community, participation from all stakeholders will be encouraged, with no particular volunteer entity holding sole authority. Selection of volunteer community leaders to guide and maintain a community is made with the aim of reflecting the full range of industry activity from practice to policy to research, local to international, and within and outside of the AWWA membership and volunteer structure.