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From the Free State to Friesland: Maryland seeks enviro and water tech companies to send to the Netherlands

The state's Department of Commerce will send a delegation of climate and blue tech companies to the Water Tech Europe Trade Expo — in a country at the forefront of water tech for centuries — this September.

The Dutch city of Leeuwarden, where the Water Tech Europe Trade Expo takes place this September. (Photo by Flickr user jbdodane, used via a Creative Commons license)
This is a guest post by Andrew Kreinik, the senior regional manager for Europe at the Maryland Department of Commerce's Office of International Trade and Investment. The office aims to create and sustain reciprocal economic relationships between Maryland, Maryland-based entities and peer institutions and companies around the world. 

If you’re a Maryland company working on the next great innovation in environmental, climate or blue tech, then your state’s  Department of Commerce has an opportunity for you.

From Sept. 19-24, the department will be leading a delegation on a mission to the Netherlands that is focused on environmental technologies. Companies from throughout the state are invited to participate.

The purpose of the trip is for Maryland companies to network with European companies, researchers and scientists at the Water Tech Europe Trade Expo. The convening takes place in the Dutch city of Leeuwarden as part of European Water Technology Week (EWTW). Delegation members will also get to meet with Dutch environmental entrepreneurs, companies and organizations before and after the trade expo.

The Netherlands possesses one of the most comprehensive sustainability frameworks of any industrialized nation. Every four years, its National Environmental Policy Plan is revised to reflect lessons learned, as well as new challenges and objectives. The trade expo and mission will thus be a great chance for Maryland’s Department of Commerce to help the state’s firms explore business opportunities abroad; find international business partners to bring innovative technologies to Maryland; network with U.S. and European firms, innovation hubs and research institutes; and raise the international profile of Maryland companies.

Space at the exhibition is free. Interested companies can apply for the state’s ExportMD grant, which covers a portion of travel expenses related to international marketing and the space reservation deposit. Grant applicants must submit their materials by the Aug. 10 deadline.

Those selected for the delegation will get to participate in the following:

  • Water Tech Europe Trade Expo — Involvement in the trade fair and the accompanying Wetsus Congress at EWTW, which features sessions and field visits focused on topics like sustainable water supply, wastewater treatment and reuse, circular economy, energy production from water, climate resilience and new water sources. This is the place for professionals working on solutions for tomorrow’s water issues. EWTW attendees include universities, research institutes, innovative companies and corporate end-users, government representatives and water innovation clusters from Europe and around the world — including stateside ones like The Water Council of Milwaukee. EWTW takes place in Leeuwarden, a water-rich economic hub in the northeast region of the Netherlands. Maryland’s Department of Commerce will have a pavilion for the state’s environmental tech businesses at Water Tech Europe.
  • Site visits and networking — Maryland is planning networking opportunities and field visits to sites in The Hague and Rotterdam, which are both principal cities in the country’s western region. There, delegation members can learn about innovative technologies and meet potential business partners. The program will be tailored to the participating companies’ foci, and Maryland Commerce Department in the Netherlands will provide free networking assistance to those participants.

The Maasvlakte section of the Port of Rotterdam, Europe’s largest seaport and a possible stop for members of Maryland’s delegation to the Netherlands. (Photo by Flickr user Frans Berkelaar, used via a Creative Commons license)

Focus areas may include:

  • Drinking water and wastewater management
  • Urban water management and climate resilience
  • Maritime and port technologies
  • Water in agriculture
  • Aquaculture
  • Renewable energy
  • Nature-based solutions for climate adaptation
  • Circular economy, water conservation and re-use technologies
  • Pollution/plastic soup
  • Digitalization

Potential site visits include The Green Village field lab at Delft University of Technology, the Port of Rotterdam (which is Europe’s largest seaport), the Port XL maritime tech accelerator, envirotech testing facilities and stormwater-related infrastructure sites. In addition, the Westus Congress will have field trips related to resource recovery from wastewater, energy production from water, circular water systems and horticulture.

Those interested in participating or getting more information may email

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Companies: State of Maryland

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