Tag Archives: city water

WATER POLLUTION THREAT TO CHINA’S POPULATION

Metro Basin Blues

Water pollution poses a real threat to china’s northern, urban population. Could constructed wetlands help? 

The following excerpts are taken from Water Canada Magazine, September/October publication.

Around the globe, there is concern about the effects of china’s rapid economic development on the air, land, water, and energy resources, as well as the ways that the country’s complex and sometimes less-than-efficient bureaucratic system may impact environmental policy implementation. the most serious of these challenges have been linked to the country’s declining water supply, which not only suffers from considerable pollutants, but also is insufficient for the country’s massive population and rapidly growing economy.  Water pollution is rampant nationwide, while water scarcity has worsened severely in north china. the problem is not only environmental— insufficient water is already limiting industrial and agricultural output in some areas. If solutions are not found and implemented, scarcity threatens to negatively impact china’s high economic growth rate and food production.

Treating China’s wastewater: Centralized wastewater treatment systems are the prevailing solution for water pollution control in many industrialized countries. to a large degree, this approach solves the problems of sanitation very efficiently. However, at the end of 2002, the official rate of municipal wastewater treatment in china was approximately 36.5 per cent, which is far from adequate given China’s serious water pollution.  Constructed wetlands (CWs) for wastewater treatment have great potential for application in china. the biogeochemical cycles of wetland plants can help transform and mineralized organic matter found in wastewater.  over the last 100 years, we’ve learned how these processes work, and recognized that many could be replicated with CWs. they’re now viewed as a viable treatment option for many different waste streams, including municipal, mining, dairy and wine-making. they’re also an attractive and stable alternative due to cost and energy savings. additionally, there are the advantages of multi-purpose reuse of the resulting high quality effluent, as well as self-remediation and self-adaptation to the surrounding conditions and environment.

Case study: Tianjin Airport Economic development Zone:  Two mega cities of china, Beijing and Tianjin, as well as the Hubei Provinces are within the region of the HaiHe river basin. the HaiHe river basin contains 10 per cent of the entire population of china, which is about 118 million people, as well as being the main source for providing fresh water to Beijing and Tianjin (Domagalski et al., 2001). this basin is facing a decrease in water levels during low precipitation leading to drought and water shortage during the dry season. It also faces serious contamination problem—the annual amount of wastewater discharged into the rivers is about four billion megagrams, and is also a major contributor to pollutant loadings in the nearby Bohai sea (Domagalski et al., 2001).

Located southeast of Beijing, Tianjin is the sixth-largest city in China (greater metropolitan population of 13,000,000). considered the economic hub of Tianjin, the Binhai new area is a new zone designated to host a number of key industrial zones, waterfront development areas, and commercial and residential properties, for nearly two million people. the region is a representation of china’s objective to modernize its coastal cities while promoting economic development.

Due to the severe impacts of urban development on water quality in Binhai new area, Tianjin, and the HaiHe river basin, the proposed solution is the implementation of two CWs at TaedZ. In collaboration with Tianjin University (TJU), Lindsay, Ontario’s Centre For Alternative Wastewater treatment at Fleming college (CAWT), Queen’s University in Kingston, and aqua treatment technologies, this location has been selected as a demonstration site for wetlands technology in a rapidly developing urban area, to address the issues of surface water degradation… China’s diverse climate and sources of wastewater allow for unique research conditions and a variety of parameters to be addressed simultaneously that would not be possible in another location.  In addition, China’s economic growth conditions add to the innovative nature of the project, and allow for new developments while taking into consideration social issues. after extensive applications in similar geographic and climatic regions in Canada such as the prairie region and southwestern Ontario, the technology may eventually benefit Canadian communities as well. 

Annie Chouinard is a graduate student in the department of civil engineering at Queen’s University.  She is conducting research in China at TJU.

“LET’S GET TANKED”, NYC’s WATER TANK PROJECT UPDATE WITH NEW VIDEO

 ~ ENJOY THIS SUPER VIDEO AND MUSIC ~  

Please visit my 3 previous blogs on New York City’s Water Tanks for plenty of background information and lots of photographs:
1) New York City‘s Water System  –  How Bizarre! –  April 3, 2012,  2)  New York City’s Water Tank Construction  –  Apr. 4, 2012 and 3) Word Above the Street’s, “The Water Tank Project – Apr. 5/12

Water Tank Project updates ~  

1)  The project is to last for twelve weeks during Summer 2013, and
2)   That the art work will be created off-site – artists participating in TWTP will donate original works of art, which will then be scanned and printed on vinyl material that will be installed on carefully selected tanks. These artist designed tanks will spark a global dialogue about the future of one of our most precious and endangered resources: WATER.

Video link ~

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/734752095/the-water-tank-project?play=1&ref=users

Here’s the latest artistic addition to the Manhattan skyline – with thanks to Architizer.com blog, June 5, 2012: http://www.architizer.com/en_us/blog/dyn/42914/reclaiming-the-water-tower-as-public-art/

Photo: Robert Banat

…”The latest in the trend is artist Tom Fruin‘s imaginatively transparent and colorful “Watertower” project, which he recently installed on a DUMBO rooftop. The piece, which opens this Thursday, June 7, maintains the proportions and size of a typical water tank, but has been rendered a glass tapestry of salvaged materials. Visible from Lower Manhattan, the sculpture is a De-Stijlesque jigsaw of upwards 1,000 polychromatic fragments of discarded and recycled Plexiglas Fruin collected from building sites all over the city. During the day, the sun sets the water tower ablaze, while at night, projection designer Jeff Sugg will illuminate the structure with a light show boogie woogie planned to play every nightfall throughout the year”

Mary Jordan
Founder/Creative Director, Word Above the Street

 PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD ~ this is a mammoth and most worthwhile undertaking of Mary Jordan and Word Above the Street to raise global awareness about the future of one of our most precious and endangered resources: WATER.

COMMENTS ON “WAYS TO SAVE WATER”

We highly recommend “WAYS TO SAVE WATER” –  an excellent article written by Sarah F. Berkowitz, as posted on Mother Nature Network, March 02, 2011 (link to article at the end of this blog). 

You will find interesting comments and Sarah’s  list of ten ways to conserve our precious water resources.

According to Sarah, “The easy access and plentiful availability of water in America and other highly developed countries can be blamed for the often wasteful attitude toward water use. For some consumers, it takes a major drought to make them aware of water waste.” and she points out ways  that we all can, by utilizing “small steps” daily,  make a “big difference”, while at the same time feel good about “preserving our limited water supply.”

 Sarah’s article points out ways to save water in your kitchen and laundry room.

In your bathroom she has hints for brushing your teeth and taking showers or baths.   

Tips also on Sarah’s list include a composting hint and a method to conserve  water in your toilet tank each time you flush. 

  Sarah has a hint for recycling your fish tank water and also one for lawn mowing.  

I whole-heartedly agree with Sarah that these steps will help us “contribute to world-wide water conservation efforts”  – and I believe they will save us money as well.

  There are two more great hints on Sarah’s list, and now that I have your interest piqued, you’ll have to check out her article on Mother Nature Network.

http://www.mnn.com/your-home/at-home/stories/ways-to-save-water 

AMERICA’S PROTECTED WATERWAYS

We highly recommend “AMERICA’S WILD AND SCENIC RIVERS” – a National Geographic article, published November, 2011 by Joel K. Bourne, Jr., and the associated Gallery of Photos of the Rivers photographed by Michael Melford (stunning!)

Links to the article, Photo Gallery and Michael Melford’s web site are listed at end of blog.

America‘s Spectacular Wild Rivers

These Scenic Waterways Thrive Under Federal Protection
in the United States


More than four decades after it became law, a little-known federal act safeguards hundreds of primordial waterways.

Photographs by Michael Melford

The Middle Fork of the Salmon River gorge is not so much a river as an exuberant expression of water at play… Today it is one of the ultimate white-water experiences in the United States, drawing thousands of visitors each year.

John Craighead, now 95, is legendary in the field of wildlife biology, … Yet the proudest achievement of John Craighead’s long and storied life, he says, is the passage of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.

 … “It took a decade of reports, lectures, and political wrangling, but when President Lyndon Johnson signed the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act in 1968, much of its language came from the Craigheads. The initial act spared eight rivers and narrow buffer zones around them from dams and development. Today the list has grown to more than 200 rivers in 39 states and Puerto Rico.”

Article link –

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2011/11/americas-wild-rivers/bourne-text

      Photo Gallery link –

http://bit.ly/rL1Ng4

       Michael Melford’s web site –

http://www.michaelmelford.com/

EXAM TIME – DRINK WATER/GET HIGHER GRADES

Students Who Drink Water During Exams Get Higher Grades

Students who drink water during their school exams may improve their grades, according to new research.

Researchers from the University of East London and the University of Westminster theorize that the water boosts academic performance by keeping the students hydrated.

That is the finding of a study conducted by Chris Pawson from the University of East London and his collaborators Sarah Doherty, Laura Martin, Ruth Soares and Caroline Edmonds from the University of East London and Mark Gardner from the University of Westminster. Their findings were presented at this week’s British Psychological Society Annual Conference, held in London.

The researchers analyzed the behavior of 447 undergraduate students, looking at whether they brought drinks into exams. If a student did bring a drink into the exam, the researchers also looked at the type of drink it was.

Students who were in higher levels of the university were much more likely to bring drinks into the exam than those in their first year of undergraduate study, the researchers note.

The results showed that those who took water into the exam — and presumably consumed the water — did better in the exam than those who did not. The researchers did not check to see if the water was actually consumed, however.

“The results imply that the simple act of bringing water into an exam was linked to an improvement in students’ grades,” said Chris Pawson from the University of East London, who led the study. “There are several physiological and psychological reasons that might explain this improvement with water consumption.”

He raises the possibility that water consumption may have a physiological effect on thinking functions that result in improved exam performance. He also theorizes that drinking water may alleviate anxiety, which is known to have a negative effect on exam performance.

“Future research is needed to tease apart these explanations, but whatever the explanation, it is clear that students should endeavour to stay hydrated with water during exams,” he said.

These findings could have implications on school policies for access to drinks during examinations at all levels of education, he added.

They also suggest that information about the importance of keeping hydrated should be targeted at first-year undergraduate students who are less likely to bring drinks into exams.  By Janice Wood Associate News Editor Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on April 21, 2012

 Source: The University of East London

   http://www.uel.ac.uk/news/press-releases/2012/04/waterexams.htm

RAINSOFT OTTAWA’S FUN FRIDAY – PUNOGRAPHY PART I

PUNOGRAPHYa joke exploiting the different possible meanings of a word or the fact that there are words that sound alike but have different meanings.

Food & drink:

 Jokes about German sausage are the wurst.

How does Moses make his tea? Hebrews it.

This girl said she recognized me from the vegetarian club, but I’d never met herbivore

Class trip to the Coca-Cola factory. I hope there’s no pop quiz.

How do you make holy water? Boil the hell out of it!

Venison for dinner? Oh deer!

I got a job at a bakery because I kneaded dough.

Haunted French pancakes give me the crepes.

Electronics:

I do not enjoy computer jokes. Not one bit.

I changed my I Pod name to Titanic. It’s syncing now.

Energizer bunny arrested. Charged with battery.

What does a clock do when it’s hungry? It goes back four seconds.

Arts:

A guy got arrested for playing the guitar. For fingering A minor.

I did a theatrical performance about puns. It was a play on words.

I’m reading a book about anti-gravity. I can’t put it down.

Cartoonist found dead in home. Details are sketchy.

Sports:

I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger. Then it hit me!

I couldn’t quite remember how to throw a boomerang, but eventually it came back to me.

I used to have a fear of hurdles, but I got over it.

The indecisive rower couldn’t choose either oar.

If you wear a blindfold at the shooting range, you won’t know what you’re missing.

 

Link

http://www.talkclassical.com/18592-more-punography-groan.html

One sports item from Pun a Day

  See you back here next Friday for Part II

CAN I BE MORE WATER EFFICIENT? WATER BROTHERS WEIGH IN

 Freshwater Conservation:

“For the past year and a half, my brother and I have been travelling the world exploring incredible water related environmental stories. Whenever we return home our friends and family all want to know how they can make a positive difference in their daily lives. So, here are three questions you can ask yourself and some tips to help you get started:

Alexander and Tyler Mifflin, hosts of the new TVO show The Water Brothers (C) The Water Brothers

Three questions you can ask yourself and some tips to help you get started making a positive difference in your water usage.

By Alexander Mifflin, star of the new TVO show, The Water Brothers

 

    1) Where does my drinking water come from and what are the big threats to this freshwater supply?

Find out where your municipality or township sources their water and then figure out how to improve the health of your local watershed. Usually these can be very simple actions like avoiding putting pesticides and artificial fertilizers on your lawn or disposing of pharmaceuticals and hazardous chemicals properly (and not down the drain or toilet!). Most municipalities across North America will provide the proper disposal methods on their websites.

 2)      What part of the ocean does the seafood on my plate actually come from and how was it caught (or grown)?

All major commercial fish stocks are predicted to collapse by the year 2048.

Our oceans are in crisis and our eating habits are the main cause.

      

The good news is that by simply asking the right questions and being more careful about what you choose to eat you can play an important role in healing our oceans! Use a seachoice.org or seafoodwatch.org pocket seafood guide or Smartphone app so you will always know the best choices.

  3)      How can I make my home more water efficient?

It might surprise you but your lawn and your toilet are the two biggest water guzzlers in your home.

Don’t over-water your lawn (try a rain barrel  and only water in the evening to reduce evaporation).

Try installing a new low flow or dual flush toilet    if you don’t already have one (rebates are often available)”

http://blog.wwf.ca/blog/2012/03/16/how-can-i-be-more-water-efficient-the-water-brothers-weigh-in/