April 01, 2017
1 Trillion Gallons of Water.
Sometimes when we hear numbers that large, it's hard to really conceive of what they mean. How much water is 1 trillion gallons, really?
Well, 1 trillion gallons of water is:
- the amount of water in about 40 million swimming pools.
- the amount of water in about 24 billion baths.
- the amount of water in Florida's Lake Okeechobee (669 square miles).
- the amount of water used in one year by 11 million homes.
AND . . .
- the amount of water wasted every year by household water leaks. Washington Post
That's really an astounding figure. Every year, enough water to serve 11 million homes is needlessly wasted. (EPA ) Down the drain. That leaky faucet or constantly-running toilet is more than just an annoyance; it is wasting water at an alarming rate.
March 02, 2017
Food and water. We can’t live without them, but many people around the world are living without enough of either. The good news is that amazing work is being done to combat both drought and famine.
We’ve written about some incredible advances in the production of clean water, including these articles:
- Clean Water Around the Globe (a billboard that actually produces clean water)
- A Book that Cleans Water? (Yes, there is a book that cleans water, and so many more amazing innovations!)
- 663 Million (life-bringing organizations dedicated to giving clean water to those in need)
There are so many more exciting new tools being utilized to give fresh, clean water to the thirsty, including this new and vastly improved solar-powered water purifier.
February 01, 2017
Last month we reported on many positive stories from 2016 —good news that you might not have heard: Desalination plants bringing water to the desert, the elimination of measles in all of the Americas, infant mortality rates decreasing in Russia and life expectancy increasing in Africa. Great strides were made in the areas of world health, conservation, and, not surprisingly, technology. This is certainly an era of astonishing technological advancement; the science fiction of yesteryear is the reality of this year. From smartphones to smart watches to smart homes, technology is changing the way we live. And sometimes in amazing ways . . .
January 01, 2017
When you read the local paper or watch the nightly broadcast, sometimes it can seem that the only news is bad news. War and terrorism, crime and corruption, natural disasters and terrible accidents. Good news doesn’t seem to be reported as often. But there is a lot of good news out there. There are positive stories, hopeful stories, and they’re all around —in your town, in your neighborhood, and all across the globe.
Just take a look at a few of the stories from 2016 that you might have missed . . .
December 01, 2016
The holidays are rife with traditions, many of them decades— even centuries— old. Traditions are a link to the past. Tradition means “handed down from one generation to the next.” Traditions remind us that we are not isolated individuals, we do not live in a vacuum; we are part of history, part of culture, part of a family. The holidays themselves are a way of remembering the past, commemorating important events. We set aside a time to remember, to celebrate.
Our holidays, and our holiday traditions, are dear to us. But where do our traditions come from?
November 01, 2016
By popular demand, we are republishing this article from November 2015.
On November 11 of 1918, the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, an armistice went into effect, a cessation of hostilities between the Allied Nations and Germany, ending the “war to end all wars.” The official end of World War I would not be declared for seven more months, at the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, but the end actually came on that November day, when the truce was signed, the opposing forces laid down their weapons, and the war known as the “Great War” was over.
October 01, 2016
Clean drinking water. Sinks and showers and toilets. These don’t seem like extravagances; they seem like basic necessities. But for so many people across the globe, they are luxuries that are completely out of reach. 663 Million people. That’s how many people in the world will live without clean water today. That’s almost twice the population of the USA and Canada combined. 2.4 billion people worldwide lack access to a toilet. 1 in 5 children under the age of 5 die each day from waterborne disease — one every 21 seconds, as a direct result of contaminated water and poor sanitation and hygiene. Those numbers are staggering; the lack of safe drinking water and sanitation is a global health crisis, one that must be confronted.
September 01, 2016
Recently we’ve looked at the issue of Clean Water, first delving into the fascinating history of and process of water treatment and purification in Part 1 and Part 2 of this series. Next we turned our attention to the world stage, where 1 in 9 people (some sources estimate that it’s closer to a third of the world’s population) do not have access to clean, safe drinking water. Close to a billion people worldwide. Last month we looked at an exciting new tool for bringing clean water to a part of the world where it is not readily available. Lima, Peru’s billboard that creates clean drinking water from humid air is an amazing innovation. And it’s not the only one. There are a number of exciting new inventions that can help people around the world have access to safe, healthy drinking water.
Would you believe there’s a book that delivers clean water? A straw? A bicycle? Read on . . .
August 01, 2016
We North Americans have unparalleled access to clean water. Clean water is such a given that we have the luxury of judging water based solely on its taste. We can simply assume that our tap water, across this entire continent, is clean and safe to drink. It’s astounding, really. The idea of not being able to find any clean water to drink is almost incomprehensible to us. This is not the case, however, in many other parts of the world. In fact, 795 million people —one in nine people across the globe— live without access to clean, drinkable water.
As we continue our look at Clean Water, having looked at the history of and process of water treatment and purification in Part 1 and Part 2, this month we will begin to look at some exciting innovations in providing clean water to people who need it.
July 01, 2016
Last month, we began our investigation of Clean Water, particularly the history of water treatment. We learned that, as a direct result of water treatment, “By the beginning of World War II, typhoid, cholera, and dysentery were, for all practical purposes, nonexistent in the United States and the rest of the developed world.” It’s not therefore surprising that the CDC calls the last century of water chlorination and treatment “one of the Ten Greatest Public Health Achievements of the 20th Century.”
As the incredible results of water treatment became more apparent, the U.S. Public Health Service set standards for water purity, standards that have been revised over the years, as new contaminants have been identified. Modern water systems carefully monitor water throughout the treatment process for traces of chemical pollutants and microbes; they have sophisticated computerized devices capable of detecting contaminants in the parts per trillion.