Fury in the Waterbed

There is so much oceanic activity going on right now that it is hard to decide where to focus.  We have Hurricane Florence about to make landfall, A cyclone headed towards Mexico/Texas, which if it picks up speed could be named Kirk.  We have tropical storms Isaac, Joyce and Helena potentially heading towards us.  That is just in the Atlantic waters.  We also have tropical storm Olivia heading towards Hawaii.  And then we have the Typhoon Mangkhut heading towards China and Philippines.

 

Sad State of Water Affairs

Can we all agree on one thing?  As a collective populace of the world, can we get to a place where all of the world’s citizens get unfettered access to clean water and clean air?  Seeing that those are natural resources, it should not be a difficult task right?  Well think again.  These demonstrations of unrest and the public outcry in South of Iran over water issues are telling of the fact that water sufficiency is a difficult balance to achieve.  Around 40% of the country has been in drought conditions for past few years with December 2017 being the driest months in around 67 years.  The continued politicals struggles and investment in wars has not been helpful either.  My prayers with the families struggling for clean water.

Water-Energy Nexus – The Cool Water

This is a fascinating article on how few engineers from MIT have developed an innovative approach for generating fresh drinking water from the cooling water lost from power plants.  The process considers zapping water with electrically charged particles, ions, and producing water usable for drinking purposes.  The implications of this study for treating seawater and also producing drinking water from not-so-potable sources of water is limitless.

What is amazing is that the approach was developed by a Ph.D. student, Maher Damak, and an Associate Professor in Mechanical Engineering, Dr. Kripa Varanasi, as part of their startup company called Infinite Cooling and part of Damak’s thesis.  Not too shabby for a Ph.D. dissertation, there.  The research was supported in part by the Tata Center for Technology and Design.

Puerto Rico and the New Normal

One of the deadliest storms to have hit Puerto Rico and Dominica in September 2017, Hurricane Maria still continues to impact puertoricans’ ability to get back to normalcy.  Is it getting back to normal or is it a new normal?  Read on to find out the struggles of the country and its populace as they try to grapple with water issues.

All the resources and support in the world and yet recovery takes a lot of time.  I am hoping that the country gets back to its feet soon enough so when I dream of Puerto Rico, images like the one above come to mind !!

Credit:  Article referred by a friend.

Karl Marx… You needed a Water Expert

A good friend of mine and I always get into arguments over the merits (me) and demerits (him) of socialism.  While the “ism” is a long argument to be had, let’s just focus on the downside of socialism, as it pertains to the basic human necessity, water.  Venezuela has been in news for so many reasons, mostly all sad.  This story made me shake my head in disbelief on how a system can get such basic things wrong.  Read on.

Interestingly enough, the country is coming off a drought and is extremely water rich,  but 85% of those reserves are on the opposite side of the country where people inhabit.  Lack of power and infrastructure investment made the situation go from bad to dire.  This story is slightly old but quite depictive.

Not facing the reality?? Then there is this concern about filling up swimming pools.  Talk about misplaced priorities.   Read on.

Dubai and the Next Big Thing

What do you do when mother earth throws deserts at you (no… silly… not the eating kind) and you have a fast growing thirsty populace…?  Well you make the opposite of lemonade… Desalination seems to be the go-to solution for all water issues in the Middle East and Dubai’s Water Authority recently awarded $237 Million to build a big ass desal plant to produce 40 MIGD (that’s just a whole lot of water… for you non-water folks).  Read on.  And while you are there, check out some cool pictures… coz we all love pictures..

Hang on…hang on… we are not done yet….

What if… you are the biggest oil producer in the whole wide world but you just thought.. nah.. this oil thing is too old school, let’s focus on developing the solar energy and power our desalination plant (among other things) with the solar power?  That is just what these folks are planning to do.  A pretty innovative and green approach to producing drinking water.  Read on.

You know what they say… everything is big in DUBAI.

Show me the DATA…

Contrary to what one thinks…. the issue that plagues a water professionals’ ability is the lack of data.  Pure numbers.  We don’t lack technology, we don’t lack skills, we aren’t lacking in thinking power either.  What we are severely lacking is historical data, collected consistently, stored diligently, and available freely.  Nothing helps us grapple with water issues of a region better than solid and sound historical data…

Boring? Well leave this fun party then.. shoo!!  At least these people seem to agree with me ..

What will revolutionize the water industry would be technological advancements and innnovations in data collection, data mining, data storage, and data communication.