The Water Institute Hosts its 4th Water Café

The Water Institute hosted its 4th Water Café with guest speaker Kathy Grassick, Sales Operating Manager for the Irish & UK division of Agilent. Agilent is a multinational company that delivers scientific solutions. Scientists and researchers all over the world rely on Agilent for their high specification laboratory equipment. Whether the need is focused on environmental testing, academic research, medical diagnostics, pharmaceuticals, petrochemicals or food testing, Agilent provides the laboratory technology to suit their needs.

Kathy discussed in detail how Agilent has become the “3rd most Sustainable Company” according to Barron’s top 100 list and how this translates to the company emphasising the importance of sustainability, how they operate, where to invest and good regulation of their company.

It was stated by Kathy that Agilent is working on manufacturing technologies with sustainability in mind and “Green Technology” was the phrase used to describe this. In the current times, resources such as space, water and energy consumption are a huge priority as they are significant costs to the companies that use Agilent equipment. This has led to various ground-breaking technology that has been produced. An example of such technology is Intuvo.  Intuvo is a Gas Chromatography (GC) instrument which involves no cutting of the column, direct heat instead of long-time fanning, consumes less energy than traditional GC instruments, and eliminates the use of one-use consumables.

Keeping to the topic of sustainability, Kathy went over what Agilent as a company has done internally to keep their spot in the top 100 most sustainable US companies such as have changed to LED lighting on all of their sites, both offices and factories, which is a multimillion investment but stated that it was cost-effective in the long run. Many of their manufacturing sites are also built by lakes. There are three main reasons for this; their own water source, using their own oil-free pumping systems, and the picturesque nature of having a lake nearby!

People are really important to Agilent, they have a talented workforce of around 13,500 people worldwide. A programme they currently run is providing experimental kits for schools and they also run after-school programs to promote STEM. Their mission is to “improve the human condition” and “improve life for all”.

Overall, it was a really informative session and we are very grateful to Kathy for giving us her time, knowledge and insights on such an interesting and growing company. 

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Molly Williams
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