Monday 31st July 2017

Message from Phil Mahoney, new FSA President

I wanted to start by saying I greatly appreciated the invitation to participate in the ESA’s recent General Session in Barcelona.  It was really beneficial for me to meet many of the members and see the ESA in action first hand, and I was impressed by the number of projects and activities that the ESA is working on currently and the engagement of the members in these activities.

With summer upon us, you would think that activity slows down as people start to take vacations, but that doesn’t seem to the case with the FSA.

There have been some interesting developments the Government Affairs Committee has been monitoring.  With the new administration taking steps to roll back a number of regulations using the Congressional Review Act, one rule was upheld by a close vote and did not get rolled back- the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) which takes care of rule on methane emissions is still in place.  The EPA recently moved for a 2 year delay on implementation of the recently passed regulations on methane emissions from new and existing sources, but the courts ruled against that.  The rules are still in place for now; time will tell what happens next, but the process take time to unfold.  The FSA also submitted contributed comments on the Environment and Climate Change Canada proposed draft rules for methane emissions for existing sources.  Last but not least, there is a newly appointed head of the US Trade Representative Office, Robert Lighthizer.  The WTO negotiations on Environmental Goods stalled in December for a number of reasons including the transition to a new administration.  As part of a Government Affairs Committee effort, a number of FSA members have written letters to Ambassador Lighthizer to voice their support for the agreement, and the inclusion of sealing devices as environmental goods.  Hopefully the negotiations resume as soon as possible.   

I’m really excited about the launch of the FSA Knowledge base which Henri Azibert presented at the meeting in Barcelona.  The Mechanical Seals Division led the effort to create the site and prepare a broad scope of content on all things related to seals to an audience on a global scale.  The content is relevant, easily updated, and it’s in a digital, easy to access and search format that today’s engineers, buyers, maintenance personnel and managers are more likely to use.  The goal is to follow our Mechanical Seals Division’s lead and add content for all divisions so that we can educate as many people as possible on all of our technologies.

Our upcoming FSA General Session in October which will be co-located with the Hydraulic Institute’s Centennial Meeting in Dallas Fort Worth.  The HI is a global association for pumps and pumping systems with whom the FSA continues to build a solid working relationship.  The general session has a number of excellent speakers, and there will be several training sessions presented by the FSA (for all participants) on “Metal and Rubber Expansion Joints” and “How do Design Stuffing Boxes and Seal Chambers”. 

In my next update, I’ll provide an update on the FSA’s Strategic Plan, the Gasketing Handbook (which should be available soon) and a Marketing Committee projects that are in the works.

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Message from Phil Mahoney, new FSA President

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