John Meyers is a pioneer in the field of industrial wastewater treatment. As the Managing Director of SWA Water Australia, he has a depth of knowledge and scope of experience unparalleled in the industry.
John and his founding partners established SWA Water Australia in 2006, but John has over 40 years of experience in wastewater treatment, working both in Australia and across the globe.
John trained as a civil engineer in his home town of Auckland, but like many antipodeans, wanderlust got the better of him; after a few years, he landed in Sydney and fell in love with the city.
After completing a Master of Chemical Engineering at UNSW, he found his first job in wastewater treatment. It was a baptism of fire.
“On my second day, they sent me down to the Shell Oil refinery in Geelong and said we need to design the oil separators for the refinery wastewater treatment plant”. I didn’t even know what an oil separator was and I had never even been to a refinery. I was thrown right into the deep end and the rest, as they say, is history.”
Being thrown in the deep end certainly worked out well for John and the team at SWA Water Australia. We can proudly say that our industrial oil separator is the best in the world, with the capability to reduce oil concentration from 10,000 ppm to less than 1 ppm. Developing a product to this standard is the result of a major investment in research and development and a real commitment to constant improvement based on client feedback. It’s a team effort, but John’s expertise is integral to the development of all of our market-leading industrial wastewater equipment.
“We’re heavily focused on product development and improvement. We invest heavily in research and development so we can get a better more effective product to market. We’ve achieved that with our key products and we’re keen to expand.”
One of John’s main drivers in founding SWA Water Australia was the opportunities he and his partners saw for expert industrial wastewater treatment solutions internationally. Today SWA Water Australia’s plants and products are in over 20 countries worldwide.
As a born innovator, John loves to work at the coal face, finding solutions to new problems that have never been encountered in the market.
“We’ve got to think outside the box because every day there are new challenges. Often we’re in situations where there are no published answers to a particular issue or problem and it’s a case of pioneering it yourself. So, we find ourselves working at the coalface developing solutions based on reasonable assumptions and then spending the time needed on the testing and commissioning phase.”
John finds deep satisfaction at the quality of work SWA Water Australia delivers and he’s also incredibly proud of the lasting environmental impact the company’s industry-leading wastewater treatment solutions have had on the planet.
“I did a calculation a while back adding up the amount of oil all our oil separators around the world have separated and recovered… it’s hundreds of millions of litres of oil. Without our equipment, that oil would have gone back into the environment. And that reinforced in me that as a company we are doing something worthwhile.”