Fresno State’s International Center for Water Technology (ICWT) will bring bestselling author Charles Fishman to the central San Joaquin Valley as keynote speaker at the 2012 Water Technology Conference May 3 at the Clovis Veterans Memorial Building.

The conference will bring together the best minds in water technology science along with water policy experts to discuss solutions to water challenges covering a broad range of needs, applications and experiences. The conference will also include a line-up of speakers, exhibits, and networking opportunities.

In his 2011 book “The Big Thirst,” Fishman writes, “Many civilizations have been crippled or destroyed by an inability to understand water or manage it. We have a huge advantage over the generations of people who have come before us, because we can understand water and we can use it smartly.”

The Water Tech Conference will examine many of the same issues addressed in the writing of Fishman, a former Washington Post reporter. Now he works for the innovative business magazine Fast Company and is a three-time recipient of UCLA’s Gerald Loeb Award for business journalism. His previous book, “The Wal-Mart Effect,” was a New York Times bestseller.

“We are excited to have a speaker of Mr. Fishman’s caliber at this conference,” said David Zoldoske, ICWT Director.  “Mr. Fishman is an energetic speaker and I believe the audience will be impressed with the depth of his knowledge of water issues around the world. More importantly he will underscore how fast change can occur and why we need to be prepared.”

Registration is now open for attendees, exhibitors and sponsors. Information and registration are available at www.californiawater.org or by contacting Laura Ramos at 559.278.2066 or lramos@csufresno.edu.

Partners for this year’s Water Tech Conference are the American Society of Irrigation Consultants, the American Groundwater Trust and the California Agricultural Irrigation Association. Azusa-based Rain Bird Corp. is a key sponsor of Fishman’s appearance.

Conference planners include the cities of Clovis and of Fresno and the Kings River Conservation District.

ICWT was established in 2001 as a public-private partnership dedicated to the development and application of advanced technologies that enhance water use for urban, environmental and agricultural purposes and improve water utilization.  Through applied technology, ICWT’s goal is to provide efficient first use and effective reuse of water supplies worldwide.  The core mission of ICWT is to conduct “good science” which can then form the basis for policy development, technical innovation and the management of finite resources.