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Plumbing - Frankfurt
March 3, 2023

Young Plumbers to Showcase Skills for a Sustainable Future at ISH 2023 Frankfurt

The International Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Foundation (IWSH) and the World Plumbing Council (WPC) will host 12 young plumbers from seven different countries at ISH 2023 in Frankfurt, Germany, to showcase the job skills needed by today’s plumbing professionals.

In the latest edition of the WPC-IWSH Plumbing Champions program, the plumbers will assemble pre-wall frame systems and internal plumbing during the first three days of the ISH show. The systems will then be transported to and installed in bathrooms at Niddahalle, part of the Eintracht Frankfurt sports club in the west of the city, which is undergoing modernization retrofits. The showcase demonstration will run from March 13-17.

The Eintracht Frankfurt sports club is the social partner for this new Plumbing Champions initiative at ISH 2023, the world’s leading trade fair for the HVAC and plumbing industries held biennially in the city. “Plumbing Champions is a first for ISH Frankfurt 2023,” said Stefan Seitz, Messe Frankfurt’s director of Brand Management for ISH 2023. “Our theme for this year’s show is ‘Solutions for a Sustainable Future,’ and we are pleased to work with the WPC and IWSH to give something back to our host city while simultaneously bringing our theme to life.”         

The bathrooms in Niddahalle are more than 40 years old, built before today’s high-efficiency plumbing solutions that use less water. “Frankfurt is a water-stressed area. Drought conditions threatened significant economic damage last year when water on the Rhine got so low it impeded barge traffic,” said Dave Viola, CEO of IAPMO and IWSH (IAPMO’s philanthropic arm) and deputy chair of the WPC. “The plumbing industry can alleviate water stress through improved water technology and a skilled workforce. We’re here to demonstrate it in real life.”

The WPC will bring Plumbing Champions to Frankfurt from the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry of the United States and Canada (UA), the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (Australia), Apprenticeship Training Trust (New Zealand) and the Connect Trade Union (Ireland); all hosted and working together alongside peers from the Frankfurt branch of Innung Sanitär Heizung Klima (SHK), the master craftsperson’s guild for sanitation, heating and air conditioning in the city of Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

“Plumbing Champions provides a unique international learning and networking experience for up-and-coming plumbers from across the WPC membership,” WPC Chair and UA Director of Plumbing Services Tom Bigley said. “Plumbing Champions celebrates youth, diversity and new approaches shaping the future of our industry.”

The following Plumbing Champions are scheduled to participate: Patrick Howorka, Alexander Tödter and Colin Cubr (Germany); Danny Hoekstra (Australia); Sam Madgin (New Zealand); Veronika Schächle (Liechtenstein); Alex Svetz (United States); Elijah Sommers (Canada); and Jamie Bermingham and James Stenson (Ireland).

This new Plumbing Champions initiative will showcase retrofit approaches that advance energy-efficient goals for the built environment: critical industry requirements set out in modern-day, international agendas such as the European Green Deal. The team will perform tasks including joining and bending hot and cold water piping systems, installing cisterns and brackets for water closets and basins, and joining HDPE waste pipe. Participants will install plumbing systems designed by Geberit, a European leader in sanitary products working in partnership with the Frankfurt branch of Innung SHK.

“We are grateful to the World Plumbing Council for creating Plumbing Champions to increase awareness and understanding of the essential roles and responsibilities of plumbers — installing and maintaining advanced technologies to build stronger and more resilient communities,” said Peter Paul Thoma, chairman of the plumbers guild of Frankfurt.


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