Past Event

Rethinking Water

February 11, 2021
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Online Event

It was estimated that there are 240,000 water main breaks per year in the U.S. There is also significant under-investment in water infrastructure. It is estimated that as much as $1 trillion will be needed to meet the needs of a growing society and repair our rapidly crumbling system. Adequate financing will be essential to keeping pace with this need. Innovation and alignment within the finance industry will have a major impact on efficiently filling this investment gap through private capital, for example VC/PE, water trading, and Federal/State funding. In this webinar we discuss how the finance industry is rethinking its role in the evolution of the water industry, and what mechanisms must be developed to attract more capital. 

Please register here:


  • 12.00PM: Welcome Remarks 
  • 12:05PM: The funding need and funding gap 
  • 12:10PM: Panel topic: Taking action now on Water Financing. What has worked? What hasn’t worked? What will work moving forward? 
  • 12:40PM: Video: “What is the most pressing aspect of aging water infrastructure today?” 
  • 12:45PM: Q&A 


Usha Rao-Monari, Co-Founder at Water Finance Exchange, is currently a Senior Advisor to Blackstone's Infrastructure Group. She is on the boards of UPL Limited, Zaghreb Airport, CDP North America, Water Unite, and Wine to Water. Prior to that, she served as CEO of Global Water Development Partners. Prior to Blackstone, she held several senior positions at the IFC, part of the World Bank Group. 

Michael Deane leads the Clean Water State Revolving Fund program at the EPA. Deane most recently served as the executive director of the National Association of Water Companies (NAWC). Prior to that, Deane served as associate assistant administrator for water at the EPA. Deane has also served as an executive at several water management companies.

Josh Haacker, founder of One Water Capital, has 20 years experience in the resource efficiency sectors. His experience includes CIO of a water sector-focused family office, board member to a water quality monitoring business, and advisor to multiple global infra-structure firms. He was previously MD of an asset-focused PE firm where he led investments in clean power and sustainable infrastructure projects. 

Upmanu Lall is the Director of the Columbia Water Center and the Alan and Carol Silberstein Professor of Engineering, and the Chair of the Dept. of Earth & Environmental Engineering at Columbia University. 

Alex Loucopoulos (Moderator) is a partner at Sciens Water, a Private Equity firm that makes investments in private companies to address the big problems facing U.S. water infrastructure today. 

The Rethinking Water Webinar Series aims to bring together investment professionals, academics, the scientific community, public policy experts, and government agencies to address some of the biggest water problems facing our nation. The series is presented by Sciens Water and the Columbia Water Center, in collaboration with Mazarine Raymond James and philanthropic partner Merton Capital Partners.

Contact Information

Paulina Concha Larrauri