Water Security is National Security

Water resources and how they are managed impact almost all aspects of society and the economy, in particular health, food production and security, domestic water supply and sanitation, energy, industry, and the functioning of ecosystems. Under present climate variability, water stress is already high, particularly in many developing countries, and climate change adds even more urgency for action. Without improved water resources management, the progress towards poverty reduction targets, the Millennium Development Goals, and sustainable development in all its economic, social and environ- mental dimensions, will be jeopardized. UN Water.Org

Friday, December 8, 2017

Silicon Valley Wants to Solve Our Water Problems


Despite a ​lack of VC ​funds, ​there’s a ​steady flow of ​entrepreneurs. ​

Gary ​Kremen—​the founder of ​Match.com, ​former owner of ​Sex.com, and ​serial ​investor—​is into water. ​

The ​entrepreneur ​started ​investing in ​water tech ​startups a few ​years ago. ​Today ​he’s an ​elected member ​of Silicon ​Valley’​s ​water district , an ​agency that ​manages water ​and flood ​control ​for 2 million ​people. ​Earlier this ​year, he helped ​craft ​a proposal to build ​a tunnel under ​the Sacramento-​San Joaquin ​River Delta ​that could ​improve ​drinking water ​reliability for ​cities from San ​Jose to San ​Diego. ​

Following ​several years ​of ​investing in ​energy and ​solar startups, ​Kremen became ​attracted to ​water problems, ​he says, ​because ​it’s an ​issue ​that’s ​yet to be ​solved. “​Water is so, so,​ so, so hard,​” he says.​ “We need ​to focus on the ​hard things.​” ​

A small ​fraction of ​venture capital ​dollars ​currently goes ​into tech to ​manage or clean ​water. Analysis ​from research ​company ​Cleantech Group ​finds that ​total dollars ​and deal volume ​for water tech ​startups in ​2016 were down ​70 percent ​and 65 percent,​ ​respectively, ​from a ​peak in ​2013. Many ​water ​investments are ​now coming from ​family offices, ​corporate ​investors, and ​philanthropy. ​

But despite ​the investing ​challenges, ​there’s ​still healthy ​interest from ​entrepreneurs, ​who are ​drawn in ​by issues such ​as California’​s drought, the ​Flint, Mich., ​water crisis, ​climate change, ​and population ​growth. ​The number of ​tech accelerators ​focused on ​water issues ​jumped from 14 ​in 2013 to 26 ​in the first ​half of 2017, ​according to ​Cleantech Group.​

At the same ​time, water-​intensive ​industries ​looking to ​conserve ​resources ​and comply with ​regulations are ​increasingly ​turning to ​software to do ​so.

Robin ​Gilthorpe, ​chief executive ​officer of ​seven-year-​old ​WaterSmart Software Inc. , says he ​now sees “​a good steady ​flow of capital ​and entrepreneurs ​into the water ​sector.” ​His company, ​which was ​Kremen’s ​first ​investment, ​uses data to ​help water ​utilities ​improve their ​operations. ​

“Three ​years ago, ​‘digital ​water’ ​wasn’t a ​thing. ​Today ​there’s a ​lot of talk ​about it,”​ says ​Gilthorpe, who ​entered the ​field ​after a career ​in big data and ​analytics. ​

Silicon ​Valley even has ​its own water-​focused tech ​accelerator,​ ​ImagineH2O . The ​company began ​eight years ago ​and has worked ​with more than ​80 companies, ​including ​WaterSmart.​ ​Leveraging ​water data is ​one of the ​bigger trends ​for ImagineH20’​s companies, ​says its ​president, ​Scott Bryan. ​“​Entrepreneurs ​are applying ​what they ​learned in IT ​and biotech to ​the water space,​” he ​says. ​

Some argue ​that the ​greatest ​opportunity to ​invest in water ​is in ​industrial ​applications, ​not municipal ​water use. ​

The 50,000 or ​so U.S. water ​utilities are ​both highly ​regulated ​and ​conservative ​when it comes ​to buying and ​installing new ​technology.​ ​Gilthorpe ​of ​WaterSmart—​which does ​sell to ​utilities—​contends ​that these ​utilities are ​conservative ​with good ​reason. “​Water is so ​essential to ​life; you ​can’t ​take risks with ​it,” ​he says. ​

But even the ​market for ​managing ​industrial ​water has its ​challenges. In ​recent years, ​the oil and gas ​sectors have ​pulled back ​from buying ​tech that’​s used to ​manage ​wastewater. ​That has ​contributed to ​a drop in ​venture capital ​investment in ​water tech ​startups in ​recent years, ​say analysts ​at ​Cleantech Group.​

Some startups ​have managed to ​find buyers ​despite the ​difficulties. ​Earlier this ​year, ​Monsanto Co.-​owned Climate ​Corp. ​acquired a ​startup called ​HydroBio, which ​was using data ​to help farmers ​manage ​irrigation. ​Climate Corp. ​now offers the ​software ​to customers in ​Europe and ​plans to expand ​sales to ​farmers in the ​U.S.

“Water ​will continue ​to be a ​challenge in ​agriculture. ​Digital tools ​will help ​growers make ​more informed ​decisions,​” says ​Climate Corp. ​CEO Mike Stern. ​

Kremen has ​had more ​success than ​most with his ​water ​investments. In ​addition to ​putting one of ​the first ​checks into ​WaterSmart, he ​also backed ​Aquacue ​Inc., a leak ​detection ​company that ​was bought by ​Badger Meter ​Inc., as well ​as a water ​treatment ​startup called ​HydroNovation ​Inc., which was ​acquired by ​Taiwanese ​company ​KemFlo ​International ​Co.

Despite his ​investing wins,​ ​Kremen ​remains ​unusually ​focused on ​water policy. ​He plans to run ​for reelection ​to ​his ​district board ​seat in 2018. More

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Tackling water security: Who owns the right to groundwater?

Tariq said that to understand water security there is a need to understand water scarcity. He explained, “The global yardstick for water scarcity is that if you have 1,700 cubic metres per person, per year then you are in a very comfortable water regime.”

He added that the moment this amount reduces, you start getting into water stress situations, water shortages and water scarcity.

“Plant the water, as the best place to store water is underground”
“The surplus water available for Pakistan doesn’t last for more than 30 days.” He elaborated that for the rest of the 335 days, Pakistan is in a semi-drought or drought-like condition.

The PWP CEO said that for an arid country like Pakistan there is a need to have 40% surface water storage. However, he deplored that the country has only 7% storage to counter the problem. He added that this is also reducing due to sedimentation, which leaves a big question mark on the country’s water security. More

Monday, November 27, 2017

I'm on the Kill List. This is what it feels like to be hunted by drones

I [Malik Jalal] am in the strange position of knowing that I am on the ‘Kill List’. I know this because I have been told, and I know because I have been targeted for death over and over again. Four times missiles have been fired at me. I am extraordinarily fortunate to be alive.

Friends decline my invitations and I have taken to sleeping outside under the trees, to avoid becoming a magnet of death for my family

I don’t want to end up a “Bugsplat” – the ugly word that is used for what remains of a human being after being blown up by a Hellfire missile fired from a Predator drone. More importantly, I don’t want my family to become victims, or even to live with the droning engines overhead, knowing that at any moment they could be vaporized.

I am in England this week because I decided that if Westerners wanted to kill me without bothering to come to speak with me first, perhaps I should come to speak to them instead. I’ll tell my story so that you can judge for yourselves whether I am the kind of person you want to be murdered.

I am from Waziristan, the border area between Pakistan and Afghanistan. I am one of the leaders of the North Waziristan Peace Committee (NWPC), which is a body of local Maliks (or community leaders) that is devoted to trying to keep the peace in our region. We are sanctioned by the Pakistan government, and our main mission is to try to prevent violence between the local Taliban and the authorities.

In January 2010, I lent my vehicle to my nephew, Salimullah, to drive to Deegan for an oil change and to have one of the tires checked. Rumours had surfaced that drones were targeting particular vehicles, and tracking particular phone signals. The sky was clear and there were drones circling overhead.
https://goo.gl/6NVZ0q

Sunday, November 26, 2017

In Peru's deserts melting glaciers are a godsend - until they are gone

Using some of the glacial water to ‘Green’ the Peruvian the desert, as is being done in China and North Africa would be a smart move. See LOESS PLATEAU WATERSHED REHABILITATION PROJECT


Yet climate change now threatens some of these ambitious undertakings, reducing lakes, diminishing aquifers and shrinking glaciers that feed crops. Here in Peru, the government irrigated the desert and turned it into farmland through an $825 million project that, in a few decades, could be under serious threat.

“We’re talking about the disappearance of frozen water towers that have supported vast populations,” said Jeffrey Bury, a professor at the University of California at Santa Cruz who has spent years studying the effects of glacier melt on Peruvian agriculture. “That is the big picture question related to climate change right now.”

A changing climate has long haunted Peru. One past civilization, the Moche people, built cities in the same deserts, only to collapse more than a millennium ago after the Pacific Ocean warmed, killing fish and causing flash floods, many archaeologists contend.

Now dwindling water is the threat. While more than half of Peru sits in the wet Amazon basin, few of its people ever settled there. Most inhabit the dry northern coast, cut off from most rain by the Andes range. While the region includes the capital, Lima, and 60 percent of Peruvians, it holds only 2 percent of the country’s water supply.

The glaciers are the source of water for much of the coast during Peru’s dry season, which extends from May to September. But the icecap of the Cordillera Blanca, long a supply of water for the Chavimochic irrigation project, has shrunk by 40 percent since 1970 and is retreating at an ever-faster rate. It is currently receding by about 30 feet a year, scientists say. https://goo.gl/Wa1JyK

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Cayman Islands Take Note: $100 Incentive Program to Purchase Real-time Water Sensors


City Launched $100 Incentive Program to Purchase Real-time Water Sensors

The City of ​Welland is ​taking a ​smarter ​approach to ​assisting ​consumers with ​water ​conservation ​and leak ​detection. City ​Council ​approved a ​partnership ​with Alert Labs ​to assist ​Welland ​residents with ​the purchase of ​real-time water ​sensors. ​

Alert Labs is ​a unique ​Ontario based ​company ​committed to ​water ​conservation ​through ​technology. ​

WELLAND ​RESIDENTS GET $​100 OFF ​ FLOWIE

The City of ​Welland is ​offering $100 ​incentives for ​residents to ​purchase a ​Flowie water ​sensor. The ​regular price ​of Flowie is $​259, along with ​a $49 annual ​monitoring fee. ​

The first 100 ​Welland ​residents to ​participate in ​the Flowie ​Incentive ​Program can ​purchase Flowie ​for $159 and ​will receive ​one year of ​monitoring for ​free. ​

FLOWIE : WATER LEAK DETECTOR

The Flowie ​water sensor ​straps onto ​residential and ​commercial ​water meters. ​It detects ​water usage and ​sends alerts to ​the customer’​s phone when it ​identifies high ​or unusual ​water ​consumption. ​

The Flowie can ​also detect ​silent water ​leaks, frozen ​pipes, ​temperature ​drops, and high ​humidity. It ​also generates ​detailed water ​usage reports ​and continues ​to work during ​a power outage. ​

FLOODIE : FLOOD SENSOR

For homeowners ​with flooding ​or water damage ​concerns, ​Flowie has an ​optional ​companion ​sensor, Floodie,​ that alerts ​homeowners to ​the presence of ​unwanted water. ​Floodie fits ​easily under a ​hot water tank, ​dishwasher, ​washing machine,​ or beside a ​sump pump to ​help protect ​against water ​damage ​

REAL-TIME WATER USE DATA

“​Residential ​water meters in ​the City of ​Welland are ​currently read ​and billed ​quarterly. As a ​direct ​consequence, ​staff’s ​ability to ​provide up-to-​date consumption ​data lags up to ​three months,​” said ​Erik Nickel, ​Acting General ​Manager of ​Infrastructure ​Services. ​“A ​customer’​s ability to ​receive early ​notification of ​possible water ​leaks is not a ​service the ​city currently ​offers ​customers; ​however, with ​the installation ​of the Flowie, ​customers can ​be alerted of ​leaks ​immediately.​” ​

Residents are ​urged to take ​advantage of ​the Flowie ​Incentive ​Program and ​contact Alert ​Labs directly ​with inquiries ​or to purchase ​the real-time ​water meter ​sensor online ​at ​www.alertlabs.ca/welland .

Saturday, October 14, 2017

TH Köln: International Symposium in Cologne Adopts Declaration on Water Security and Climate Change

TH Köln: International Symposium in Cologne Adopts Declaration on Water Security and Climate Change

As a result of their international symposium on water security and climate change at the TH Köln - University of Applied Sciences 200 researchers from around 45 countries have adopted the 'Cologne Declaration on Water Security and Climate Change'. They confirm that a concerted collaboration between science, politics, business, and civil society is required at all levels in order to ensure the water supply worldwide and manage the risks of climate change.

"Climate change has a massive influence on how the limited resource drinking water is managed. At the same time, well-designed water management is a key factor in enabling societies to adapt to climate change. Due to this complex system with its many natural and man-made influence factors, we require a comprehensive, interdisciplinary approach," explains Prof. Dr. Lars Ribbe, head of the Institute for Technology and Resources Management in the Tropics and Subtropics (ITT) at TH Köln.

The Institute and its associated Center for Natural Resources Development (CNRD) organized the conference together with the Food Security Center at University of Hohenheim and the Center for Sustainable Water Management in Developing Countries at Technische Universität Braunschweig. As academic excellence centers for exchange and development all three institutions are supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development


(https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/th-koln-international-symposium-in-cologne-adopts-declaration-on-water-security-and-climate-change-649739783.html

Thursday, September 7, 2017

A Global Plan of Action of Climate Restoration

A GLOBAL ACTION PLAN OF CLIMATE RESTORATION

A global plan of climate restoration of the “small water cycle” (1) of regional landscapes, with a goal of decreasing floods, drought, natural disasters, and other undesirable climate changes, and increasing the biodiversity and production potential of all continents, through the introduction of various measures of rainwater retention suitable for all areas of human habitation and usage.

PORTUGAL-TAMERA – Bernd Mueller is a permaculture and water specialist, and head of Tamera’s ecology project. The focus of the ecological work of Tamera is on building the Water Retention Landscape as a far-reaching approach to healing the land, and regenerating water supplies, topsoil, pasture and forest, and greater diversity of species. See www.tamera.org.

Please download full article here: https://goo.gl/FMB9z3

1. WHY IS A GLOBAL ACTION PLAN (GAP) NEEDED?

Water management policies worldwide are typically based on the principle of what can be termed the “old water paradigm,” which assumes among many other considerations, that surface waters are the main source and reserve of fresh water supplies. Global legislation and investment therefore tend to be oriented toward protecting, developing, and utilizing surface waters with infrastructure such as large reservoirs for water collection and distribution. Although rainwater is the cyclical source of all fresh- water supplies, it is nonetheless often considered to be waste product to be drained away quickly into streams and rivers.

There is a need to perceive by way of a “new water paradigm,”(1) that in natural ecosystems, water is integrated into small, regional water cycles, which supply vapor to the atmosphere to condense and form rain, the sun being the driving force of the circulation of water in small water cycles. We also need to appreciate the thermoregulatory processes provided by the movement of water between the surface of the earth and the atmosphere, which maintains the proper temperatures for life on earth.

NATURAL FOREST: USA- State of New Hampshire-Forested areas provide excellent shading, infiltration, and transpiration to regulate small water cycles in the landscape.

There needs to be increased attention on the gradual, sometimes almost imperceptible impacts of human activities that have led to the reduction of continental freshwater stocks. There is often a misconception that human activities have no direct effect on water cycles, and that temporal and spatial changes are either part of natural, evolutionary processes, or caused by global climate change. Therefore we tend to underestimate the influence of continental freshwater reserves on global energy and thermoregula- tory processes, as well as the degrading effects of climate change related to excessive drainage of ecosystems. These human impacts can detrimentally affect extensive territories; these include not only traditionally arid landscapes, but also areas of higher rainfall where human infrastructure drains water away from the land, ultimately to accumulate in the oceans.

It is necessary to retain about 100m3 of rainwater for every inhabitant on the planet. This means that, if every person on earth implemented measures to retain 100m3 of rainwater in their area within one year, enough water retention measures would be achieved to retain more than 760 km3 of water, which would in turn replenish the small water cycles in the atmosphere above land. This aforementioned rainwater, returned to the small water cycles, would lead to a decrease in ocean levels by 3 mm. Even if some doubts exist about the global program’s ability to reduce ocean levels, renew the climate or revive the small water cycles, it is nevertheless legitimate to initiate such a program, based on increased water resources such as that evidenced from an experimental program in the nation of Slovakia. Based on the findings of the Slovakian model, it can be expected that, at the global level, the retention of rainwater on land will result in the increased yield of water resources by more than 30 000 m3 per second and there- fore will kickstart the process of decreasing the production of sensible heat into the atmosphere, with an expected yearly reduction by 500 000 TWh. This will effectively lower the risks of natural disasters as well as occurrences of extreme weather events. More