Many investors have recently been following the price of gold.
Well they should. The price of the yellow stuff has risen mightily
and there are plenty of reasons to expect it to rise more. However
I have been focusing on water. Without gold we can live. Without
clean water we die.
We have seen in recent messages that there is international investment
opportunity in the treatment of municipal wastewater. One special
area of growth is secondary biological treatments that enhance
the removal of solids processes.
In short there are three ways that sewage is cleaned, aeration,
filtration and bioactivity (microbes eat the solids and crap).
Upgrading existing activated sludge plants can be costly, especially
making tanks and aeration facilities larger. So there is excellent
growth in a technology called integrated fixed film activated
IFAS technology combines the traditional activated sludge approach
with a biological treatment system that employs microbes grown
on plastic. In day-to-day language this means that pieces of plastic
with more microbes to eat the crap are placed in the sewage.
This significantly increases the capacity of a
waste processing plant
without increasing the size of the plant. By increasing the microbial
population, a tank’s treatment capability can be increased
by a factor of 2 or even 3. This represents a significant cost-savings
over adding aeration capacity.
There are added benefits in that IFAS can also
be used to reduce nitrogen in existing wastewater treatment plants.
In areas where there is a lot of fertilization, nitrogen gets in
the water through run off and must be removed because nitrogen
encourages algae growth in water and the algae robs the water of
Many sewage plants need to convert to nitrification.
The IFAS systems are dramatically less costly than the traditional
solutions of adding new basins.
Several public companies are producing IFAS technologies.
Siemens AG (NYSE ADRs:SI) offers and IFAS Agar process marketed
by USFilter, a unit of Siemens Water Technologies.
Another public company is Groupe Laperriere & Verreault
Inc. (TSX:GLVSVA)/Dorr-Oliver Eimco of Canada. They have patented
EIMCO® Cleartec® IFAS technology that has been applied
to wastewater treatment for over sixty years.
There are also several private companies involved
that are also worth watching should they become public. These include,
Entex Technologies, Inc., Kolnus NA, Brentwood Industries, and
Hydroxyl Systems, Inc.
The old British saying is "Where there
is muck there is brass."
Today’s growing population
has created so much muck that there may even be gold and investments
in IFAS may be one way to turn clean water into the yellow stuff!
Until tomorrow’s message, good investing!
Learn more about investing in water. Join
Merri, Thomas Fischer of Jyske Bank and me at our next International
Business and Investing Made EZ course in North Carolina, this
May 26-28, 2006. Review
where to invest and do business now and learn which markets and
currencies may be strong in the year ahead. Details
Learn how to export tours to places of pure water such as this
crater lake in Ecuador that is near our home in Cotacachi Ecuador.