Bernie Krzys

Krzys


It’s now going on 30 years that we have published Trenchless Technology. Each fall we lay out the editorial direction for the following year. Our objective is to always cover the direction of the trenchless industry and to present growth opportunities in the market. Accordingly, we see microtunneling as one of those areas that continues to have solid growth potential. In this issue, we look at significant accomplishments in that market segment and forecast what the future may look like.


RELATED: 2021 North American Microtunneling Review – Microtunneling Job Log


Microtunneling is a new installation method vs. rehabilitation. It’s not given as much attention as is horizontal directional drilling (HDD). Sure, HDD projects are now achieving bores of great lengths, but consider that microtunneling projects are routinely exceeding 1,000 ft in length and do so exactly on line and grade. Additionally, curved microtunneling is being more frequently specified in engineering documents.


The interest in microtunneling is there as we saw record attendance at last year’s Microtunneling Short Course. The course happened to take place in February 2020 just before COVID-19 hit. For 2022, the course moves to a new venue and time.


It will take place April 27-29 in beautiful Scottsdale, Arizona, a suburb of Phoenix. The venue is Scottsdale Stadium, the spring training facility of the San Francisco Giants. Check out the details at: microtunnelingshortcourse.com.


Infrastructure Spending


I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling that Congressional passage of an infrastructure bill in the United States is increasingly remote. It’s hard to imagine that any substantive work will be accomplished by this Congress, considering its sad partisanship situation.


Our drinking water and wastewater systems are described by ASCE as in terrible shape. Sure, we cleaned up our waterways, lakes, rivers, streams, etc. — and that’s fantastic. I live by Lake Erie, which at one time was considered beyond hope. But now sport and commercial fishing is back to what it was years ago. Many small rivers, streams and lakes now have clear water, and you can see the bottom.


However, our drinking water situation is not so great as evidenced by the continued growth in the sales of bottled water. It’s projected that this market is expected to grow annually by 7.51 percent from 2021-2026. One might ask why not divert some of the money spent by consumers in the bottled water industry to drinking water infrastructure?


Whether you are a Democrat or Republican, you should be contacting your elected representatives in Congress. Your support for water and wastewater infrastructure spending will be heard. I learned years ago, while working with the National Utility Contractors Association (NUCA), that elected officials react to personal contact.


NUCA and other industry associations including AWWA and NASSCO organize annual summits in Washington, D.C. with elected officials in attendance. They separately engage these congressional representatives throughout the year. Let’s continue to hope that infrastructure funding will eventually take place.


Contact your representatives in Congress,


Bernard P. Krzys


Publisher