Category Archives: Water conservation

Award Winning Film – A Must See! Iceland’s Water “Vatn”

1-ICELAND VATN_WATER

I posted my 437th blog this past Tuesday and thought I’d have a look at our most viewed blogs and re-post some of them again for you from time to time (save you from scrolling though our lengthy archives). I’ve added a photo and a brief bio excerpt of Enrique Pacheco.

What a magnificent, stunning and profound result of E. Pacheco’s approach to viewing water conservationpersonify and give water a voice!!!

Your friends from Rainsoft Ottawa know you will certainly enjoy this unique video presentation!

Photographer and filmmaker Enrique Pacheco‘s most recent short film, “Vatn” (the Icelandic word for water), offers stunning views of Iceland’s oceans, rivers and waterfalls…

Shot and edited over a 6-month period, the film employs an interesting narrative structure that personifies water and makes it the film’s protagonist. “Human beings are the antagonists,” Pacheco said of the film, in an interview published on his Web site.

“We are changing the life cycle of water. This film is for water conservation. Instead of talking about water, I decided to personify water, give it voice, so we can hear it.”

ENRIQUE PACHECOEnrique Pacheco is a professional cinematographer from Spain. He has been working in video production for more than 10 years, but Enrique’s career changed when he moved to Iceland. There he started to specialize on time-lapse and DSLR cameras, exploring the raw landscape of Iceland and shooting some of nature’s most volatile subjects, such as active volcanoes, glaciers, waterfalls, and the traditional culture of Iceland. Some of his latest short films have been very successful in Vimeo. “Winter in Hell”, “Raw Lightscapes”, “Made on Earth”, “The Maghreb and “Vatn” are all long-term self-productions made with great effort and passion. – See more at: http://www.enriquepacheco.com/about-me#sthash.RqRYUffa.dpuf 

Great tips to save $$$ on water bills

SAVE ON WATER BILLS

Article from digitaltrends.com – CUT DOWN YOUR MONTHLY WATER BILL WITH THESE HANDY TIPS by Emily Schiola — February 1, 2014

SAVE EARTHWhether you are doing it to save the earth or simply to free up more BEER MONEYbeer money each month, there are numerous ways to reduce a water bill. Of course, there are methods we’ve all heard about, such as taking shorter showers, turning off the tap while brushing teeth, and if it’s yellow, let it mellow. These options aren’t as catchy as that last one, but they are easy and they will save you money. There are more methods than these age-old standbys, however. Here’s our list of methods to reduce that pesky water bill.

WATER IN FRIDGE1. Keep bottles of drinking water in the fridge so you don’t have to run the tap to get it cold. Or put it in the freezer and let it melt. Or better yet, use ice. The ice you put in your gin and tonics can also be used to cool water.

2. Likewise, heat up water for washing dishes in theBOIL WATER microwave or on the stove. This can be tricky for a couple reasons. You don’t want to heat it too much or you will burn yourself and sometimes it is hard to know how much water it will take, so it might take some patience.

LEAKY FAUCET3. Fix leaks. This might seem obvious, but sometimes it is hard to tell that a faucet is leaking, especially if it doesn’t make a sound. It is good to replace washers in faucets every few years, especially if you live in an older place.

DISHWASHER4. Use your dishwasher. It takes less water to run a full load — the key here is full — of dishes than it is to hand wash them. You’re welcome, lazy people.

INSULATE PIPES5. Insulate water pipes. Go to a hardware store and get some foam that is already cut in the shape of a pipe. Tape that to the pipes. This will help heat up your water faster, so you won’t lose as much while you’re waiting for it to heat.


MELLOW YELLOW AND BRICK IN TANK6. MacGuyver your toilet to use less water. There are a few ways to do this. You can install a low pressure toilet, similar to those popular in Europe. You can also fill two water bottles with an inch or two of sand or gravel and put them in the tank of the toilet. This will raise the water in the tank and trick it into using less per flush. See, we still are smarter than the machines.


SINK DISPOSER7. Use your disposal sparingly. Yes it is handy not to walk two feet to the trash when rinsing dishes, but disposals use water, so only use it as needed.


COLD WATER WASH8. Wash clothes in cold water. It will get your clothes just as clean as hot water, it will preserve colors better, and it will save water and energy. There are no downsides to this tip. In fact, there are no downsides to conserving water, so just do it.

http://www.digitaltrends.com/home/reduce-water-bill/

Here are a couple of Youtube videos that apply to saving money on your water bills –   

SUCCESS IN BATTLE WITH NESTLE OVER WATER RIGHTS!

PARLIAMENT

NESTLE RED X“Battle with Nestle over water affects Pontiac” – Published in The LowDown Online, by William Amos and Carissa Wong November 27, 2013

WATER CHART

Everyone needs water. Life exists because of it. In Canada, we expect water to be everywhere, accessible and clean. But the reality is that less than one per cent of the world’s freshwater is readily accessible for direct human use.

ONTARO MAPWe also expect our governments to protect this resource and put a community’s need for drinking water ahead of a corporation’s desire to bottle and sell water for profit. But sometimes, governmental priorities get confused, as they did recently in Ontario.

Every day, Ontario permits Nestle Canada Inc. to take 1.13 million litres of water, which it then bottles and sells, from an aquifer in Wellington County near Guelph. GUELPH AQUIFERLast year, the Ontario government — through the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) — renewed the permit on the condition that Nestle would take less water from the aquifer during serious droughts. But Nestle appealed these mandatory restrictions to the Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal, which has jurisdiction to determine disputes over groundwater permits. Then the MOE tried to cut a settlement deal with Nestle.

ENVIRO LAW CLINICThe deal would have allowed Nestle to avoid the mandatory drought restrictions. But in February, pro bono lawyers at Ecojustice challenged the deal on behalf of Wellington Water Watchers and Council of Canadians.

We filed a legal submission with the Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal, arguing that the proposed settlement was bad for the province and deserved closer scrutiny. Last month, the Tribunal agreed with our clients. It concluded that the proposed settlement deal was not in the public interest and was inconsistent with the Ontario Water Resources Act. The Tribunal ordered a full hearing so that the appropriateness of the drought-based restrictions could be thoroughly examined.  But recently, as a result of the Tribunal’s decision to order a hearing, Nestle withdrew its appeal of the mandatory drought restrictions. The deal is dead.

GUELPH GROUNDWATERSo Nestle must comply with the original permit conditions, reducing the amount of groundwater it takes from Wellington County during drought. Because these non-profit community groups took action, Nestle must leave more water for other users (in dry times) and the government must ensure they live up to that promise.       

Federal, provincial and municipal governments are each responsible, to the extent of their jurisdictions, for managing groundwater resources. But that’s not always what happens. Sometimes well-organized, dedicated members of the public must use the legal system to hold government accountable.

GUELPH WATERSHEDOur watersheds are vulnerable when governments roll out the red carpet for private companies who bristle at mandatory restrictions on their water takings.

In this case, the MOE had it right in the first place — drought-based restrictions should be applied to all future water takings for bottle water enterprises. All Ontarians, not just those who drink water from a well, need to be protected against those who would cut deals that limit the government’s ability to safeguard our shared water supplies. The same approach should apply in Quebec.

PONTIACThe example from Wellington County resonates throughout Canada. It hits home to those of us living in the Pontiac who depend on well-water for our basic needs. When making decisions about the water that sustains our communities, the government’s job is to put the greater public interest first.

Ed. note: William Amos is a Chelsea resident and is the Director of the Ecojustice Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Ottawa. Carissa Wong is an articling student at Ecojustice.

NESTLE ROAD SIGNThe following are my thoughts and not part of this article:
I would think that the province of B.C. should be taking a very close look at this  outcome for many like Sheila Muxlow, pictured outside Nestle’s bottling plant near Hope, B.C. on Aug. 12, 2013, who have concerns about Nestle withdrawing millions of litres of water without payment.  According to the provincial Ministry of Environment, “B.C. is the only jurisdiction in Canada that doesn’t regulate groundwater use.”

http://www.lowdownonline.com/battle-with-nestle-over-water-affects-pontiac/

Interesting related link ~

https://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/blog_categories/bottled-water/blogs/

CUT WATER BILLS BY $1OOO+ ~ INCREDIBLE INNOVATION!!!

ORBSHOWER

The following excerpt is from CNN.com’s ‘Futuristic water-recycling shower cuts bills by over $1,000′, by Stefanie Blendis and Monique Rivalland. Youtube video, “Futuristic water recycling shower cuts bills by over $1,000″, published on Nov 12, 2013

ASTRONAUTIn space, astronauts go for years without a fresh supply of water. Floating in a capsule in outer space they wash and drink from the same continuously recycled source. So why, asked Swedish industrial designer Mehrdad Mahdjoubi, do we not do the same on Earth?
This was the concept behind the OrbSys Shower - a high-tech purification system that recycles water while you wash. In the eyes of Mahdjoubi, we should start doing it now, before it becomes a necessity. 

CLOSED LOOP

So how does it work? Similar to space showers, it works on a “closed loop system:” hot water falls from the tap to the drain and is instantly purified to drinking water standard and then pumped back out of the shower head. As the process is quick, the water remains hot and only needs to be reheated very slightly.

As a result, it saves more than 90% in water usage and 80% in energy every time you shower, while also producing water that is cleaner than your average tap.
“With my shower, which is constantly recycling water, you’d only use about five liters of water for a 10 minute shower … In a regular shower you would use 150 liters of water – 30 times as much… According to research carried out by his company, Orbital Systems, these savings translate to at least €1000 ($1351) off your energy bills each year.
Mahdjoubi proposed the OrbSys shower while studying Industrial Design at the University of Lund in Sweden. His concept formed part of a collaborative project with NASA’s NASA LOGOJohnson Space Center, which looks to drive design concepts that could potentially assist space expeditions…
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 1.2 trillion gallons of water are used every year for showering in the United States alone. And yet, rather disturbingly, across the world more than three times the population of the States lacks access to any clean water at all.
NO COMPROMISEThe concept of a water-saving shower is by no means a new one, but when CNN’s Blueprint team caught up with Mahdjoubi at his offices in Malmo, southern Sweden, he explained that because it doesn’t compromise on comfort, it’s different to the rest. It has a higher than average water pressure and a very stable flow because, unlike conventional showers, it works independently from other appliances …
At the bathing house, CNN introduced Mahdjoubi to Danish industrial designer Nille Juul- Sørensen, who recently designed Malmo’s Triangeln train station. Juul- Sørensen was keen to talk about the wider potential of Mahdjoubi’s design: “My interest is not in the objects but in the system. There will be so many applications for this.”
If deployed on a bigger scale, the purification technology developed for OrbSys could be used in taps and drinking fountains in the world’s developing countries, where water-related illness is rife. “Everybody should save as many resources as possible,” says Mahdjoubi, “but obviously these showers would be even more beneficial for people living in areas with water shortages.
“I want to get it to as many people as possible. That’s the next step. It’s not just about saving water. The motivation is to be smart about how we use our planet’s resources.”
http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/11/tech/innovation/futuristic-water-recycling-shower-orbsys/index.html

P.E.I.’S NEW WATER AUDIT PROGRAM

PEI WATER AUDIT

Switching to low-flow shower heads can cut water-use by half and save thousands of dollars from a hotel’s water bill. It’s just one of the suggestions the City of Charlottetown floated to hotels in a recent water audit. Laura Chapin explains in this CBC audio, ‘Conservation, policies and PEI’s water-use laws’, May 16, 2013 ~
http://www.cbc.ca/islandmorning/episodes/2013/05/16/conservation-policies-and-peis-water-use-laws/

The following article, Be My Guest ‘Hotels participate in a new water audit program in Prince Edward Island.’ by Clark Kingsbury appears in the May/June issue of WaterCanada magazine.

Charlottetown’s Water and Sewer Utility Department has launched an innovative project aiming to improve water efficiency in the city’s hotels. The Hotel Audit project offers to identify easy, cost-effective way for hotels to reduce water waste by both guests and staff. The project will be executed in partnership with Holland College’s Energy Systems Engineering Technology program. Three hotels are currently involved.

“This pilot supports the tourism industry while also reducing the amount of water used in our city during the busy summer months,” says Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee. “Involving Holland College in the process allows us access to the expertise of its energy systems engineering technology program managers and provides students with an excellent educational opportunity.” The project requires students to perform the audits with water and sewer utility staff members.

Despite public concern about the amount of water consumed by cruise ships docking in Charlottetown’s harbour, the city’s hotels actually consume more water than the Harbour Authority uses in an entire year.

“It seems lately that the focus has moved from conservation to trying to assign blame to a particular industry for high water usage, but the reality is that it’s not one industry or sector that is to blame,” says the water and sewer utility’s chair, Edward Rice. “Conserving water and finding ways to keep water use down during the summer months is the collective responsibility of all businesses, sectors, and industries, as well as governments and residents.”

The audit includes testing of all water use in the participating facilities, and provides recommendations with payback periods based on anticipated savings on water and energy bills.

 

HOW EARTH MADE US – WATER ~ A MUST SEE VIDEO!!!

HOW EARTH MADE US_WATER

How Earth Made Us – The untold story of history.

This is part 2 in Professor Iain Stewart’s series, “How Earth Made Us”.  I highly recommend you take an hour to watch it as it is superlative!!!

Our planet has amazing power, and yet that’s rarely mentioned in our history books. This series tells the story of how the Earth has influenced human history, from the dawn of civilisation to the modern industrial age. It reveals for the first time on television how geology, geography and climate have been a far more powerful influence on the human story than has previously been acknowledged. A combination of epic story telling, visually stunning camerawork, extraordinary locations and passionate presenting combine to form a highly original version of human history.

Youtube video, “How Earth Made Us – Water”, uploaded on May 16, 2011 – Of all our planet’s forces perhaps none has greater power over us than water.  For me water is the most magical force on earth.  The presence of water shapes, renews and nourishes our planet.  It’s our planet’s life blood, that pumps through it continuously…

Water

This time he explores our complex relationship with water. Visiting spectacular locations in Iceland, the Middle East and India, Iain shows how control over water has been central to human existence. He takes a precarious flight in a motorised paraglider to experience the cycle of freshwater that we depend on, discovers how villagers in the foothills of the Himalayas have built a living bridge to cope with the monsoon, and visits Egypt to reveal the secret of the pharaohs’ success. Throughout history, success has depended on our ability to adapt to and control constantly shifting sources of water.

Discover why societies have succeeded or failed, and how the environment has influenced every aspect of our history from art to industry, religion to war, world domination or collapse. Visiting some of the most iconic places on Earth, How Earth Made Us overturns preconceptions about our civilisations and our cultures to offer a new perspective on who we are today.

~Youtube video presented by Professor Iain Stewart ~

Link to ~ How Earth Made Us—a masterly BBC documentary

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2012/04/eart-a21.html

 
Our heartfelt thanks to Professor Stewart
for his exceptional accomplishment!

RIVER OF LIGHT CELEBRATION ~ ALBERTA, CANADA

WEB SITE COLLAGE

RIVER OF LIGHT LOGOShifting and evolving as it travels to rivers throughout the world, the River of Light has gained local and international recognition through its ability to not only engage communities to participate in the work, but also to highlight the importance of river preservation and water conversation on a global scale.  The River of Light is a world touring art installation by Creatmosphere that combines floating lights, sound and new technologies to celebrate the rivers of the world through public art.

River of Light Art project on the Bow River in Calgary August 2010, Artist: Laurent Louyer.  Photo slideshow to start with video clip of colour changes starting at 1:31 and then a few more images.  Music by Roger Subiranan Mata, “Point of No Return”, available through a creative commons license on http://www.jemendo

RED DEER RIVER2013 marks the 100th birthday of the City of Red Deer and to celebrate this the Red Deer River will become the territory and stage for a series of daylight sculptural and sound installations and night-time light and video interventions that aim to create new Points of View for the community to discover and engage with their city and river.

Web: www.riveroflight.org
The River of Lights: Points of View has been commissioned by the
Central Alberta Historical Society for the Red Deer City Centennial.

Associated link ~http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/river-of-light

SOPHISTICATED GROUNDWATER MONITORING VIA SATELLITE

WATERCANADALOGOThe following excerpts are taken from Water Canada’s March/April 2013 article, “UNDERGROUND NETWORK – From sensors below the surface to satellites  somewhere in orbit, groundwater monitoring is becoming more  sophisticated”, by Erin Pehlivan.

HELEN APIO CHARITY.ORGHelen Apio is filled with joy as she collects clean water in her Northern Uganda village.  When she didn’t have water, she would walk to the nearest well—2.4 kilometres away—and wait in line with hundreds of other women, clutching two empty five-gallon water cans, anticipating stock.

BC GROUNDWATERCharity: water has helped women like Apio by introducing a unique water technology that detects groundwater in developing countries. Founded in 2006, charity: water’s first project was to install six wells in a Ugandan refugee camp.  They bought a GPS for $100, took it to Uganda, visited each project location and plotted six points on Google Maps, making the information and images public on their website.  Six years later, the charity has funded over 6,994 water projects in 20 countries serving over 2.5 million people with clean drinking waterCHARITY PUMP SENSORSThey have recently been allocated US$5 million for a pilot project via Google’s Global Impact Award to develop remote sensor technology specifically for groundwater.

So far, the charity has mapped each of its water projects to see how they function in real-time.  The remote sensor technology will help keep them posted on whether water is flowing at any of their projects, at any given time, anywhere in the world.

The efficient design of remote sensor technology means that individual community members don’t need to visit every project physically to ensure constant water flow.  These sensors manage time, budgets and resources with ease, allowing more time to be spent analyzing the actual water sample itself in the lab.

Below the surface: While real-time technology is growing more common throughout the water industry, groundwater applications are scarce.

RICHARDRichard Kolacz, president of Global Spatial Technology Solutions Inc. (GSTS), observes smart sensor capabilities that connect to groundwater sensors in Canada, allowing people to collect information from the sensors remotely.

GSTS LOGO2One Ontario conservation authority is already using one of GSTS’s water sensor prototypes on site.  Initially, conservation authorities collected information manually.  Now they’re able to collect it remotely.  “We’ve developed an interface – a means of connecting to a groundwater sensor— to collect information in a format that the conservation authority likes,” says Kolacz.  “Rather than waiting six months or more to collect data, they could have it back instantly.”

GROUNDWATER SENSORSThe data coming from groundwater sensors to conservation authorities allows them to monitor water quality and quantity, and helps them understand the health and use of the water.

What’s so important about monitoring water data?  The data could help First Nations communities in northern Ontario, according to Kolacz.  “We would have the ability to monitor key data points on potentially clean or waste water treatment plants, and provide opportunities to monitor the health and status of those facilities remotely,” he says.

Much like charity: water, the difficulty with GSTS’s prototype comes from having to train staff to manage facilities. The data still has to be analyzed, and the quality of that analysis depends upon a certain level of knowledge.

Please note:  I found the following YouTube video, published on Mar 27, 2013, that is directly related to the above information.  Mr. Kolacz speaks about GSTS’s most recent application regarding goundwater monitoring.  His presentation dealing with this topic runs from 3:20 to 7:30 on the video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=tEIb4z3YFe0#at=237

CHARITY SENSORS2Meanwhile, charity: water’s goal is to develop and install 4,000 low-cost remote sensors in existing and new water projects globally, all of which will transmit real-time data to the charity, its partners, and eventually to donors via status updates.  Canada can learn from this model. According to the 2010 Review and Assessment of Canadian Groundwater Resources, Management, Current Research Mechanisms and Priorities by theCCME LOGO Canadian Council of Ministers of the  Environment, practitioners in the field need access to organized groundwater data.  With projects like the ones charity: water and GSTS are piloting, that access can skyrocket.

SATELITEGroundwater is a valuable resource, but it is poorly understood and expensive to investigate. Incentives to effectively manage the resource are low. But respondents of the aforementioned review demand significant effort from the provincial government databases to provide up-to-date groundwater information accessible online. And once we embrace the new insights of cloud-based collaboration and networked sensor arrays, science-based policy will develop and advance, leading to more responsible water resource management and investments – especially when it comes to the murky and mysterious water that flows beneath us. Erin Pehlivan is a Toronto-based writer.

Related links ~

http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/earth-sciences/geography-boundary/remote-sensing/geospatial/1196

for Charity:water ~ http://washfunders.org/Blog/(offset)/30

WATER CONSERVATION TIPS

    WATER CONSERVATION

I am reblogging the following National Geographic article, ‘Water Conservation Tips’, and the link may be found at the end of the article.  Please read the full article as I am certain that you will find many new suggestions for conserving water in and around your home.

TOILETS, TAPS, LAUNDRY, SHOWERS AND DISHES
•1994 was the year that federally mandated low-flow shower heads, faucets, and toilets started to appear on the scene in significant numbers.
•On average, 10 gallons per day of your water footprint (or 14% of your indoor use) is lost to leaks. Short of installing new water-efficient fixtures, one of the easiest, most effective ways to cut your footprint is by repairing leaky faucets and toilets.
SHOWERHEAD•If you use a low-flow shower head, you can save 15 gallons of water during a 10-minute shower.
HOT WATER TANK•Every time you shave minutes off your use of hot water, you also save energy and keep dollars in your pocket.
running bath water•It takes about 70 gallons of water to fill a bathtub, so showers are generally the more water-efficient way to bathe.
TOILET•All of those flushes can add up to nearly 20 gallons a day down the toilet. If you still have a standard toilet, which uses close to 3.5 gallons a flush, you can save by retrofitting or filling your tank with something that will displace some of that water, such as a brick.
washing machine•Most front-loading machines are energy and water-efficient, using just over 20 gallons a load, while most top-loading machines, unless they are energy-efficient, use 40 gallons per load.
•Nearly 22% of indoor home water use comes from doing laundry. Save water by making sure to adjust the settings on your machine to the proper load size.
DISHWASHER•Dishwashing is a relatively small part of your water footprint—less than 2% of indoor use—but there are always ways to conserve. Using a machine is actually more water efficient than hand washing, especially if you run full loads.
ENERGY STAR SYMBOL•Energy Star dishwashers use about 4 gallons of water per load, and even standard machines use only about 6 gallons.
•Hand washing generally uses about 20 gallons of water each time.

FOOTPRINTYARDS AND POOLS
•Nearly 60% of a person’s household water footprint can go toward lawn and garden maintenance.
LAWN•Climate counts—where you live plays a role in how much water you use, especially when it comes to tending to a yard.
SWIMMING POOL•The average pool takes 22,000 gallons of water to fill, and if you don’t cover it, hundreds of gallons of water per month can be lost due to evaporation.

DIET
WATER USED IN FOOD•The water it takes to produce the average American diet alone—approximately 1,000 gallons per person per day—is more than the global average water footprint of 900 gallons per person per day for diet, household use, transportation, energy, and the consumption of material goods.
QUARTER POUNDER•That quarter pounder is worth more than 30 average American showers. One of the easiest ways to slim your water footprint is to eat less meat and dairy. Another way is to choose grass-fed, rather than grain-fed, since it can take a lot of water to grow corn and other feed crops.
POULTRY•A serving of poultry costs about 90 gallons of water to produce. There are also water costs embedded in the transportation of food (gasoline costs water to make). So, consider how far your food has to travel, and buy local to cut your water footprint.
PORK•Pork costs water to produce, and traditional pork production—to make your sausage, bacon, and chops—has also been the cause of some water pollution, as pig waste runs into local water sources.
•On average, a vegan, a person who doesn’t eat meat or dairy, indirectly consumes nearly 600 gallons of water per day less than a person who eats the average American diet.
COFFEE•A cup of coffee takes 55 gallons of water to make, with most of that H2O used to grow the coffee beans.

ELECTRICITY, FUEL ECONOMY, AND AIRLINE TRAVEL
ELECTRICITY•The water footprint of your per-day electricity use is based on state averages. If you use alternative energies such as wind and solar, your footprint could be less. (The use of biofuels, however, if they are heavily irrigated, could be another story.) You would also get points, or a footprint reduction, for using energy-star appliances and taking other energy-efficiency measures.
WASH CAR•Washing a car uses about 150 gallons of water, so by washing less frequently you can cut back your water use.
GAS•A gallon of gasoline takes nearly 13 gallons of water to produce. Combine your errands, carpool to work, or take public transportation to reduce both your energy and water use.
FLYING•Flying from Los Angeles to San Francisco, about 700 miles round-trip, could cost you more than 9,000 gallons of water, or enough for almost 2,000 average dishwasher loads.
•A cross-country airplane trip (about 6,000 miles) could be worth more than 1,700 standard toilet flushes.
•Traveling from Chicago to Istanbul is just about 10,000 miles round trip, costing enough water to run electricity in the average American home for one person for more than five years.

INDUSTRY—APPAREL, HOME FURNISHINGS, ELECTRONICS, AND PAPER
•According to recent reports, nearly 5% of all U.S. water withdrawals are used to fuel industry and the production of many of the material goods we stock up on weekly, monthly, and yearly.
COTTON TEE SHIRT•It takes about 100 gallons of water to grow and process a single pound of cotton, and the average American goes through about 35 pounds of new cotton material each year. Do you really need that additional T-shirt?
RECYCLE•One of the best ways to conserve water is to buy recycled goods, and to recycle your stuff when you’re done with it. Or, stick to buying only what you really need.
LAPTOP•The water required to create your laptop could wash nearly 70 loads of laundry in a standard machine.
PAPER•Recycling a pound of paper, less than the weight of your average newspaper, saves about 3.5 gallons of water. Buying recycled paper products saves water too, as it takes about six gallons of water to produce a dollar worth of paper.

Link to article ~ http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/freshwater/water-conservation-tips/

CANADA ~ A WATER SOLUTIONS COUNTRY

WATER SOLUTIONS COUNTRY1

“A WATER SOLUTIONS COUNTRY -  Strategic steps for a more competitive water sector in Canada lead the way to global opportunities” – excerpts taken from the May/June issue of Water Canada by David Crane.

The availability and quality of water is the overarching challenge facing the global community in the 21st century. It is also Canada’s opportunity.

WORLD POPULATIONA world population that is projected to add 2.5 billion people by 2050, a global economy that is forecast to quadruple in this same period, the prospect of adding one billion people to the global middle class, and a sharp increase in the number of people in big cities will mean a an unprecedented demand for water. GLOBE WITH TAPAs well as more people, which will mean much greater need for clean water and sanitation, a bigger population with rising incomes means a much higher level of consumption of food, energy, natural resources, and industrial products—all of which will also increase the demand for water.

CLIMATE CHANGEAdd the expected impact of climate change on the distribution and availability of water, which could leave large numbers of people facing severe water stress, and the threats of drought and floods to food production, and it’s clear water is the most serious challenge we face. We can substitute batteries for oil in automobiles, but there is no substitute for water. So we face a water-stressed world.

WORLD WATER FORUMNeed, however, equals opportunity. The challenge is for Canada to contribute to water strategies and help the world meet the global water challenge. How do we utilize our strengths—the excellence of our engineering and technical Graduates, our proven academic research capabilities, and our innovative companies that can deliver water goods and services to build up a strong water sector—to generate new jobs and competitive companies while helping to meet the overarching global challenge?

WATER SOLUTIONS COUNTRY3

Steps for a world water strategy: First, Canadians need to raise the level of understanding, not only among policymakers but also among the wider public; that there is an enormous challenge facing the world and that there is also a significant opportunity for Canada, by strengthening our research base and the strength of our companies. This is the first great challenge—to identify our water champions who will provide the leadership to make Canada a water-solutions country. These champions must come not only from academia and our clean water companies but also from the user community, our municipalities, and businesses that need a safe and reliable water supply. Water users have a significant stake in a solutions strategy. OUTDOOR CANADAThere is the risk of complacency due to a widespread public assumption that Canada’s abundant water supply means we don’t face water challenges. Yet Canada itself faces challenges—to improve water quality and sanitation performance, meet the threats of droughts and floods in agricultural lands, ensure the efficient and sustainable use of water in energy and mining industries, meet the water needs of First Nations, and improve water efficiency and conservation technologies and practices in the economy and society. LIGHTBULBMeeting domestic challenges through innovative solutions will strengthen the research base and the capabilities and competitiveness of Canadian water companies. This means efforts to balance federal and provincial budgets must not come at the expense of research or improvements in water infrastructure. Cutting these investments would mean a weaker future Canadian economy. Research and infrastructure spending are investments in a more secure and sustainable future. Another challenge needs to be addressed: How do we grow more small companies into mid-size or large companies? Canada is very successful in starting companies, but many water companies are small and remain small. They face significant challenges in obtaining the capital needed to develop new products or services, pursue new domestic and foreign markets, build the management strengths they need for success, and scale up so that users and systems integrators in Canada and elsewhere are confident in using their products or services. Many promising smaller companies fail to make the transition to significant scale, which means they can become takeover targets by large multinational corporations seeking their proprietary technologies. While federal and provincial programs that support company technology development are important, we also need to find ways to strengthen the equity base of promising Canadian companies. It is equity rather than debt that enables companies to innovate and to pursue new products or markets.

There are many advantages in Canada, including a well-developed research base, a significant number of companies with proprietary technologies and experience in the global marketplace, easy access to the U.S. and Mexican markets (which have huge future water needs), universities and colleges that graduate high-quality engineers and technicians, and some well-targeted government programs to assist small and mid-size companies. Given these strengths, failing to capitalize on them to meet the enormous world need for water solutions would represent a huge lost opportunity for Canada.

DAVID CRANEDavid Crane is an award-winning Canadian writer and the author of Canada as the Water Solutions Country: Defining the Opportunities, a discussion paper published by the Blue Economy Initiative.