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Adam Putnam travels to Tel Aviv for international water conference

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Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam travels to Tel Aviv this weekend to take part in a discussion on strategies for the world’s water and ecological systems.

WATEC Israel 2015 is a biennial conference and exhibition that brings together thousands of leading business executives, decision makers, and researchers, and features the latest technical innovations to develop new fresh water supplies.

“Florida faces unique water resource management challenges, and we must plan for accommodating the needs of our expanding population and growing economy while protecting our natural resources,” Putnam said in a statement before leaving for Israel on Friday.

While in Tel Aviv, Putnam will participate in “Implementation of Water Scarcity Solutions Worldwide – Lessons Learned from Different Regions” on Oct. 13. As part of his address, the commissioner will discuss Florida programs and technologies to restore and conserve the state’s water supply.

While in Israel, Putnam’s Sunday agenda includes a tour of IDE Technologies’ Sorek Desalinization Project, which provides clean, potable water to more than 1.5 million people — 20 percent of Israel’s municipal water. He will also tour Netafim, a smart drip and micro-irrigation solutions company, and meet with manufacturers and trade associations.

On Monday, Putnam will hold meetings with researchers, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Agriculture and U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro.

In addition to his speech on Tuesday, Putnam will meet with incoming Consul General of Israel to Florida Lior Haiat and visit Woosh Water, a municipal service that allows cleaning and refilling of bottles with purified, chilled drinking water “on the go.” He will also visit the Israel Export Institute, an Israeli governmental trade agency, and Mekorot, Israel’s national water company.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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