December 2018



I was recently fortunate to attend the 25th Annual Indian Plumbing Conference in Mumbai hosted by one of the WPC’s earliest members, the Indian Plumbing Association (IPA). This fantastic gathering, which had more than 800 delegates in attendance, also hosted the WPC’s final General Meeting (GM) for 2018. I would like to thank and acknowledge the IPA for all their assistance in providing the WPC with the opportunity to meet and I would like to thank the WPC Directors and Members who took advantage of the combined session.

It is often a challenge as members of an international organisation to be able to meet regularly, which is why the World Plumbing Council’s own triennial Conference is so important. The WPC has taken steps to make our meetings more accessible by livestreaming the General Meetings and hosting them on our YouTube channel, however there are some significant events, which cannot be missed.

As I have already, and will continue to do so in the coming months, I would like to urge you to make every effort to attend WPC 2019. There is no other event held in the world that gives the international plumbing community this same opportunity to come together and share knowledge, develop professionally and, network with like-minded people from around the world. WPC 2019 is where we will be able to gain understanding of the future direction for the global plumbing industry.

Please register now and take advantage of the early-bird registration period that will close on World Plumbing Day. If you have any questions about the Conference, contact the WPC directly via the secretariat email.

World Plumbing Day – 11 March 2019 is just around the corner, so that means it is time to start planning now. In 2018 an excellent range of activities were held all over the world. In 2019, we hope to see even more people and organisations participating. See the article further along in the newsletter for some ideas on how to get involved.



WPC Scholarship Report – Training in the USA

After a flight of more than 25 hours, Jean Claude arrived at Dulles Airport in Virginia on the 6th of August 2018 where he was greeted by WPC Deputy Chair and Director for Education and Training, Tom Bigley. Jean Claude’s first priority upon arrival was to speak to his family in Rwanda and let them know that he had arrived safe and sound.

His first full day in the US was filled with sightseeing in Washington D.C. and he met General President Mark McManus of the United Association, the organisation hosting him and facilitating the scholarship.

On August 8, Jean Claude’s educational experience began with a visit to a plumbing fabrication shop where he saw plumbing fabrications being built utilizing auto cad drawings and toured the weld shop and sheet metal shop. He also visited an extremely busy multi-family residential building construction site before heading to the Local 5 training center for a tour of the facility.

Thursday the 9th saw Jean Claude and Tom departed for Pittsburgh, driving through the mountains of West Virginia and Maryland to tour Local 27 Training center, an industrial (cracker) plant that is the largest construction site in the US and, an outpatient surgery center where they were installing medical gas piping and plumbing.

On the 10th it was a visit to the Local 449 office before a drive to Alcosan which is one of the largest sewage treatment plants in the US. It was a three-hour tour from where the sewage comes into the plant to when it leaves the plant clean enough to pass U.S. EPA standards to go directly into the river. Next stop was Robert Morris University where a new basketball arena is under construction and Jean Claude was able to go up in a scissor lift and use a pro-press machine. This machine clamps copper pipe into copper fittings.

After a rest day on Saturday, Jean Claude and Tom drove four hours from Pittsburgh through Ohio to Ann Arbor, Michigan where Jean Claude checked in for his first class at the United Association Instructor Training Program.

Over the next few days Jean Claude’s days were very busy as he worked his way through two courses with 20 contact hours each: Course 4001 Methods in Teaching Water Supply Systems and Course 4002 Methods in Teaching Drainage Systems. He also visited WPC Member NSF International’s facility for a tour and visited other classes where possible, including a Copper class where he learned to solder.

WPC Chair, Shayne La Combre presented Jean Claude with a WPC medallion during Industry Day held on 15 August and Jean Claude made an acceptance speech which was met with a standing ovation at the event. Following that, it was back to classes for Jean Claude for the rest of the day.

On Thursday the 16th, Jean Claude attended class in the morning before taking part in the graduation ceremony held at Eastern Michigan stadium. Jean Claude took part in his final class on Friday August 17. He took pictures with his classmates to capture the memory of this amazing time before departing for Detroit airport and flying to Denver to spend time at the UA Local 3 training centers located in Denver. Jean Claude’s final day in the US was Wednesday 22 August.

The entire experience was extremely eye opening and Jean Claude returned to Rwanda full of ideas and plans for increasing the abilities of plumbers in Rwanda and professionalizing the industry as a whole. Jean Claude has formed an association with like-minded individuals from his local industry. Their emphasis is on plumbing code development, curriculum development, and, training based on defined standards.

“I am very happy being a plumber and giving my contribution to challenges we have in plumbing in my country with my colleague plumbers from the whole country. Thank you for your support to open the eyes of plumbers all over the world.” –Jean Claude Twagirimana

The WPC would like to congratulate Jean Claude, firstly for successfully undertaking the inaugural UA ITP scholarship and making such a great impression on the plumbing community that came together in Ann Arbor, and secondly for immediately working to find ways to improve the plumbing industry in his own country of Rwanda. We wish Jean Claude the best of luck and look forward to assisting in whichever way we can in the development of the Rwandan plumbing industry.



WPC Scholarship 2018 Recipients Announced

The WPC received a record number of applications for scholarships in 2018. The applications were not only many, they were also very high quality. We would like to thank all those that put in the time and effort to apply for a scholarship and encourage you in your worthy endeavours in your local plumbing industries. Applicants who have been unsuccessful this time are eligible to apply again in the future.

Congratulations to Sudip Das, John Lansing and Swathi Saralaya who have been selected to undertake scholarships in 2019.

Sudip Das - WPC United Association Instructor Training Program Scholarship

Sudip Das is a plumbing engineer and trainer from Kolkata, India. Sudip is actively involved in training competitors and judging for both WorldSkills India and the Indian Plumbing Professionals League (IPPL). Sudip plans to study various courses focused on methods in teaching at the Instructor Training Program.


John Lansing - WPC Education and Training Scholarship

John Lansing is a plumbing designer from Portland, USA. John is a member of the American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) and he has contributed to the Plumbing Engineering Design Handbook, Vol II, Chapter 6 (2014 and 2018) and has written a White Paper - Maintaining Domestic Hot Water Recirculation Temperatures Above a Defined Minimum (2018). John plans to travel to the United Kingdom to explore current regional engineering practices and plumbing codes in the UK, in contrast to methods practiced in the United States before documenting the differences and providing a comprehensive overview of the application of plumbing theory and construction methods in the UK. John chose the UK in particular because the national plumbing codes and engineering resources from Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating (CIPHE) have been among the most influential, in the global context.

Swathi Saralaya - WPC Education and Training Scholarship for applicants from developing or least developed countries

Swathi Saralaya is a project manager from Bangalore, India. Swathi is the primary liaison and master trainer for the Plumbing Education to Employment programme (PEEP) – A code-based training and education programme developed by IAPMO India and the Indian Plumbing Association (IPA). Swathi has also been very active as an organising team member for the Community Plumbing Challenge 2015, India and 2017, Indonesia. It is particularly exciting to note that Swathi is the first female recipient of a WPC Scholarship.

Swathi plans to travel to Australia to explore the implementation of building regulations and plumbing standards in Australia along with learning about advancements in plumbing from the perspective of sustainability and the impact that plumbing systems have on the health of consumers and the state of our environment.



WPC Membership Renewals for 2019

The WPC has been working on implementing a new, more user-friendly membership renewals system over the last few months after finding that the previous renewal process was quite frustrating for our members.

We are pleased to announce that we will be ready to launch our new e-commerce system in time for 2019 membership renewals. All current members* will receive their renewal email including invoice in mid-December.

There will no longer be the need to log in to an account to complete payment. There will be a link in the email that will take you straight into the ‘cart’ where you can proceed with entering your credit card details directly (Visa or Mastercard) and finalising payment.

Payment by bank transfer is still available with the same details as before and all the information will be included on the pdf invoice.

For any questions about the new system, please contact the secretariat. We do hope this will be a positive change for all members and assist in making the membership renewal process much easier.

*Members whose memberships are paid under group arrangements will not receive a renewal notice.



Community Plumbing Challenge (CPC) 2018 report - Successful Navajo Nation CPC Concludes in Thoreau, New Mexico

CPC 2018 was held October 21 to 27 on the Navajo Indian Reservation in the Baca-Prewitt area of New Mexico. Four teams of plumbers from the USA, Canada, South Africa and Australia gathered to change the lives of 10 families who had to go without indoor plumbing. Meeting for the first time at the Dig Deep shed/CPC hub on Monday morning, the participants learned who their teams were and where they would be working. A welcome ceremony by Dig deep and the St Bonaventure Indian Mission followed the morning brief.

CPC 2018 was very different to previous Challenges, as teams worked on mobile houses, which rather than being set up in towns, are scattered in small family clusters across the endless desert landscape. These clusters of mobile houses can be 30 or 40 miles apart, and there are no shops or other infrastructure to speak of.

Many of the houses had some plumbing systems installed which had fallen into disrepair over the years. The situation is exacerbated as the remote community has difficulty finding skilled tradespeople to maintain and repair failures.

WPC Member Randy Lorge recounts an example of the problems that the plumbers found.

“Where toilets once existed there were only holes in the floor where the closet flange was once mounted. Where the tub/shower used to be the family now piled some of their belongings. The only plumbing fixtures that remained were the lavatory sink in the bathroom and the kitchen sink. The waste from both sinks discharged to grade. A gas water heater installed in 1998 remained in the storage compartment adjacent to the main bathroom. The family had water delivered monthly and it was stored in a 70-gallon tank located outside.”

The team found themselves installing new fixtures, pipe, bathtubs, toilets, hot water services and septic systems. It was extremely challenging to complete all the work in the five days allocated, however everyone involved were united in the common goal of wanting to help and give these families access to the same facilities that are taken for granted in the rest of the United States.

CPC 2018 was as difficult as any of the Challenges undertaken so far. It has highlighted that poor access to good quality plumbing is not just a problem in developing countries, but is a problem for remote and marginalised communities all over the world.

The WPC is proud to have sponsored CPC again this year and to have several of our Members – both organisations and individuals – directly involved. We encourage more of our members to be involved with this initiative moving forward so that lives can continue to be changed all over the world.



Member Movements and Accolades

Paul Dodds, Training Manager at WorldSkills UK and WPC Individual Member, was presented with an MBE at Buckingham Palace in October. Paul received the award in recognition of his services to the skills competitors across the UK and internationally at WorldSkills. Paul has been involved in organising and delivering the plumbing skills competition in the UK for 27 years, and has served as WorldSkills UK’s plumbing training manager for over 13 years.

After almost 50 years working in the UK plumbing and Heating industry Paul Johnson, Chief Executive at BPEC has announced that he will be handing over to Neil Collishaw (current Deputy Chief Executive) on 1st January 2019.
Paul said ‘It is time for me to hand over to a new generation who are committed to meeting the ever changing education and training needs of people who work in our great industry.’

Penny Cornah, Executive Director of the Master Plumbers Association of Queensland (MPAQ), received the ADCO Constructions Award for Achievement as a Business Woman at the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) Queensland Awards in October 2018.

WPC Chair, Shayne La Combre became a Fellow of the Indian Plumbing Association during the Indian Plumbing Conference 2018.


American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) President Carol Johnson, CPD, LEED AP, CFI, FASPE, recently appointed Christoph Lohr, PE, CPD, LEED AP BD+C, ASSE 6020, as the new Liaison to the Board of Directors for ASPE Young Professionals (AYP). He replaces Blair Minyard, PE, CDT, CPD, who was elected as the Society's Vice President, Education at the ASPE Business Meeting in Atlanta last month.


The 12th MasterInstal Awards were held 30 October in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The plumbing and electrical installation sector in the State of São Paulo employs around 200 thousand people, in 2,500 companies. A great night was had by all with several individuals and companies receiving awards across five categories.



Love Your Lav Campaign – Kevin Wellman, WPC Director

WPC Executive Board Director and CEO of The Chartered Institute of Plumbing & Heating Engineering (CIPHE), Kevin Wellman has, for many years as part of his role with the WPC, worked to promote safer sanitation and plumbing across the world.

More recently, closer to home, Kevin and his colleagues at CIPHE have become concerned that UK public toilet provision has been declining and have been especially concerned to find that some UK high streets and tourist hot spots now no longer have any council-run public toilets.

According to figures obtained by BBC reporters under the Freedom of Information law, at least 673 public toilets across the UK have stopped being maintained by major councils (unitary, borough, district and city) since 2010. In that time, the UK’s population has been increasing.

In instances where public toilets have closed, good-natured local businesses are relied upon to open their toilets to the public, but with no legal duty for then to allow non-paying customers access, what do you do when nature calls and there isn’t a public lavatory in sight? Sadly for many, a lack of public facilities results in indignity, shame and can have a real impact on mental health issues such as anxiety as well as physical health too.

Accessible toilets are vital for us all, but especially the vulnerable. Cuts to facilities such as public toilets affect a significant proportion of the population, including women, the elderly, the disabled, those with medical conditions and those with babies and young children.

CIPHE has launched a campaign to help raise awareness of this problem via social media and are encouraging people and organisations to share the CIPHE’s posts or create their own by using the hashtag #LoveYourLocalLav and #SaveTheLoo.

Follow this link for further information on the CIPHE campaign.



World Health Organisation (WHO) Updates

Drinking water, sanitation and hygiene in schools
Millions of children around the world do not have access to clean water or decent sanitation at school, putting their education – and those of girls in particular – at risk. The first ever global baseline report on drinking-water, sanitation and hygiene in schools – carried out by WHO and UNICEF – shows that 620 million children worldwide do not have access to decent toilets at school, and around 900 million children cannot wash their hands properly. Ensuring that children attend school and complete their education is crucial to a country’s social and economic development, yet a lack of decent hygiene facilities discourages children, particularly girls, from doing so.  

New guidance on the management of radioactivity in drinking-water
The WHO guidelines for drinking-water quality provide recommendations to support countries in developing drinking-water quality regulations and standards, as well as the associated risk management strategies that relate to the radiological aspects of drinking-water. In response to countries’ requests for further practical guidance in support of the implementation of these recommendations, WHO has published a guidance document Management of radioactivity in drinking-water written in the format of stand-alone questions and answers. This new guidance document aims to help stakeholders address issues relating to the management of radioactivity in drinking-water in emergency and non-emergency situations. The guidance is complemented by case studies that share good practices and lessons learnt, and which illustrate how countries have faced specific challenges within different scenarios.         

New guidance on developing drinking-water quality regulations and standards
The new guidance on Developing drinking-water quality regulations and standards provides practical guidance to support the development or revision of drinking-water quality regulations and standards based on the WHO Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality. The principles and guidance presented are broadly applicable across countries and contexts, including the more resource-limited areas. Topics covered include guiding principles, getting started, selecting parameters and parameter limits, and setting out compliance monitoring requirements.

New WHO strategy on water, sanitation and hygiene
The new WASH strategy 2018–2025 provides a framework for the direction and role of WHO to realize the vision ‘to substantially improve health through the safe management of water, sanitation and hygiene services in all settings’, within the context of the SDGs and WHO’s 13th Programme of Work. It describes how WHO will increase its impact to improve health through WASH and includes details on activities and outputs in eight priority intervention areas. The strategy is based on an organization-wide discussion on WASH priorities and challenges, and incorporates inputs and experiences from regional and country offices as well as feedback from WHO’s partners.



World Plumbing Day – Monday 11 March 2019

World Plumbing Day is just over 100 days away! Time to start thinking about how you will promote and take part in the Day.

Video project – use your phone to create a micro video for World Plumbing Day. What is a micro-video? A video of 3 seconds or less! Just enough for one sentence. The sentence is up to you. Maybe it’s a goal ‘clean drinking water for all’, ‘open defecation free’, ‘clean oceans’ or a greeting ‘Happy World Plumbing Day’, ‘Thank you plumbers’… That’s up to you. Also, your sentence does not need to be in English, we would love to receive micro videos in a range of languages, reflective of our international organisation.

Please send your micro-videos via wetransfer or hightail to by 25 February 2019.




ISH India, 28 February – 2 March 2019, Mumbai India
ISH India powered by IPA, in its 3rd edition aims to raise the bar by bringing international manufacturers and suppliers dealing with plumbing, sanitation, bathroom, kitchen and renewable energy together with regional distributors and buyers.

ISH Frankfurt, 11-15 March 2019, Frankfurt Germany
ISH Frankfurt is the world’s leading trade fair focusing on the responsible management of water and energy in buildings. It sets trends for modern bathroom design, sustainable heating and air-conditioning technology as well as intelligent home systems.

ISH China, 6 – 8 May 2019, Beijing China
ISH China & CIHE – China International Trade Fair for Heating, Ventilation, Air-Conditioning, Sanitation & Home Comfort Systems is one of the most well-known exhibition platforms under the ISH brand. It has a stellar track record in gathering the world’s leading brands within the HVAC and plumbing industry.

WPC 2019
The World Plumbing Council’s 12th Triennial World Plumbing Conference, 11-13 September 2019, Melbourne Australia
The three day conference will be based on the WPC’s Four Pillars of Plumbing program.
More info at

Contact to provide an event report or request listing of an upcoming event.


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World Plumbing Council

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