The terrible pun in the title is courtesy of Gizmag, where I learned about this device. Most serious water filters need serious pumping or squeezing or sucking as they try to force the water and all the gunk in it through a relatively small filter.
The Grayl works like a French press coffee maker, increasing the surface area of the filter to the size of the cup, reducing the pressure required significantly. It is one of those ideas that make so much sense. Read more
While it looks like the planet’s surface is covered mostly in water, the fact is there is very little water on this planet when you compare it to the size of the planet as a whole. The USGS created this image to give us a little perspective. USGS states, “About 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is water-covered, and the oceans hold about 96.5 percent of all Earth’s water. But water also exists in the air as water vapor, in rivers and lakes, in icecaps and glaciers, in the ground as soil moisture and in aquifers, and even in you and your dog. Read more
There’s a lot to know about the world’s water crisis–as you can tell from the month of posts we’ve been doing on just this one topic. But if you’re new to the discussion, catch up in one weekend with these five documentaries. From in-depth background on the political, social, and economic factors that are causing the crisis to personal stories from people affected by it, you’ll understand the problem in a whole new way.
This seven-episode set (don’t worry: each is only about 22 minutes) highlights the way the water crisis affects everyday life in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Fiji, India, Kiribati, Philippines, Thailand, and Tonga. Watch as a community joins together to rescue a coral reef in Fiji, as women in India fight shortages by finding new ways to transport water, and as a handful of other men, women, and children stand up to claim enough clean, safe water for themselves and their neighbors. Read more
Water conservation is a huge concern in Israel and the rest of the Middle East. An interesting startup in Israel called Woosh Water is helping conserve water and reduce plastic consumption by reinventing the public drinking fountain with a high-tech and networked solution.
Woosh Water stations allow users to refill water bottles and reduce the consumption of disposable plastic water bottles.
The stations can be used by anyone, but the system works best when users join the network. After joining online, users receive a small keychain sensor to login when they refill their bottle. And because they are networked together, the Woosh Water Stations track how much water a user has consumed and how many plastic bottles they have kept out of the waste stream by using a reusable bottle, as well as how many all Woosh users have collectively avoided. This provides a social reward and incentive for people to use the system and encourage others to participate, as well. Read more
The small electric motor was probably revolutionary than the electric light bulb; people could get light from gas or candles, but the motor led to the development of fans and home appliances, and changed the way factories were designed and goods were produced. But before there was universal delivery of electricity, there was tap water, and Kris De Decker of Low-Tech Magazine describes how water-powered motors did many of the same tasks.
In Europe, small motors using the public water supply appeared in the 1840s. In the US, they came into extensive use in the 1870s and 1880s. A water motor consisted of a small water turbine that was suspended in a metal casing. The diameter of the turbine runner could be anywhere between from 20 to 90 cm. Read more