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Worlds Day for Water: 5 water conservation ways that are ideal for Indian conditions

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By Ishan Kukreti

This day, 22 years ago, UN decided to recognize 22nd March as the ‘World Day for Water.’   On this day, all the UN members implemented water conservation as recommended by the UN.

According to UNWater, 783 million people do not have access to clean water. World water demand will rise up by 70% till 2050, while many places will see declining water availability. Water is a limited resource and has to be conserved for humanity to survive.

To celebrate the day, here is a list of innovative water conservative techniques which one, irrespective of their geography or profession, can make use of to save some nectar for life.

Rooftop rain water harvesting

It is the most conventional and widely used rainwater harvesting techniques. Rooftop rain harvesting is the easiest way to collect rain water for household purpose.

Building a catchment area is required to take the rainwater down into the underground tank through several filters. The harvested water can also be used to replenish ground level water.

Suitable for – Anyone who owns a house with a roof.

Cost – Rs. 10,000 – Rs. 30,000

Cycle run water pumps

In 1980 Nasiruddin Gayen, a small farmer from West Bengal conceptualized this unique invention. Instead of mechanical motors a cycle pump is used. The process not only reduces the cost of fuel but makes the person pump the amount that is required.

Paddling the cycle creates an up and down movement in the pump and this can release 100 liters of water per minutes

Suitable for – Small scale farmers, can also be used in urban settings

Cost – Less than Rs. 7000

Rainwater syringe

This method can be used to harvest rainwater in the coastal areas to dilute groundwater salinity where there is a problem of saline ground water.

Rainwater is collected from the roofs and is stored in a pressure tank. With the help of PVC pipes, the water is then transferred below the sea level of 16-24 ft. The water gets stored in the vertical groundwater column and can be used later with the help of a pump or motor.

Suitable for – Coastal areas

Cost – N.A

Joy Pumps

This is an absolutely fun filled way of conserving water. In this technique, under a merry-go-round or a see-saw, a conventional hand pump apparatus is fixed.

A tank (8-10 feet above ground level) is filled with ground water as the kids play on these rides.

This technique has been designed to cope with water scarcity problems in villages with no clear surface water source, electricity issues and high poverty.

Suitable for – Schools, parks, villages and relief camps.

Cost – N.A

Ferro-Cement Tanks

This is a cheap and durable method of rain water harvesting. All it requires to make a Ferro-cement tank is sand, cement, mild steel bar and galvanized iron wire mesh and semi-skilled laborers.

These tanks are light in weight and can last up to 25 years. The tanks can store up to 1000-2000 liters of water.

Suitable for – High rainfall regions

Cost- N.A

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Copyright 2015 NewsGram

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Hailstorms Cause Worse Damage Every Year: Experts

A May 2017 hailstorm in the Denver area caused $2.3 billion in insurance losses. Last week, hail injured 14 people in Colorado Springs and killed at least five animals at the city zoo.

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A girl with a scooter drives through a hailstorm in Munich, Germany
A girl with a scooter drives through a hailstorm in Munich, Germany

Hailstorms inflict billions of dollars’ worth of damage yearly in North America alone, and the cost will rise as the growing population builds more homes, offices and factories, climate and weather experts said Tuesday.

The role of climate change in hailstorms is harder to assess, the experts said at a conference at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado.

Climate change will most likely make large hailstorms worse, but population growth is more of a certainty, said Andreas Prein, a climate modeling scientist at the atmospheric research center.

“We know pretty certain that we will have more people in the future, and they will have more stuff, and this stuff can be damaged,” Prein said. “I think this component is more certain than what we can say about climate change at the moment.”

This year is expected to be the 11th in a row in which the damage from severe storms exceeds $10 billion in the United States, and 70 percent of that cost comes from hail, said Ian Giammanco, a research meteorologist for the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety.

“It’s such a huge driver of the dollar loss each year,” he said.

population growth , climate , hailstorms
Population growth is more of a certainty,than Climate. Wikimedia Commons

Bigger homes, closer together

Costs are rising in the U.S. because homes are getting bigger, from about 1,700 square feet (139 square meters) in the early 1980s to 2,500 square feet (232 square meters) in 2015, he said. New subdivisions also pack homes in more tightly, Giammanco said.

“So it’s a bigger target for hailstorms to hit,” he said.

The effects of climate change on hail and the resulting damage are harder to calculate because hailstorms require distinct ingredients, and global warming affects them in different ways, Prein said.

To form, hailstorms require moisture, an updraft, variable winds and freezing temperatures at lower levels of the storm cloud, he said.

Updrafts lift water droplets into the clouds, where they attract other droplets and freeze together, scientists say. Winds of varying speed and direction keep the droplets suspended in the cloud long enough to grow into hailstones. When they eventually fall, freezing temperatures in the cloud keep them from melting before they hit warmer air closer to the ground.

Climate change will most likely increase updrafts, helping hailstones form, Prein said.

But it will inhibit two hail-producing conditions, he said. Warmer temperatures will expand higher into the atmosphere, so falling hailstones have more time to melt before hitting the ground. And differences in wind speed and direction will subside, he said.

Climate change will make the atmosphere more moist, but the effect that will have on hailstones isn’t clear, he said.

the number of weaker storms but increase the number of severe ones.
The number of weaker storms decrease but increase the number of severe ones. Flickr

More storms that are severe

Kristen Rasmussen, an assistant professor at Colorado State University, said the combined effects of climate change will probably inhibit the number of weaker storms but increase the number of severe ones.

“So we actually think that’s why we’re seeing a decrease in the number of weak to moderate storms and an increase in the most severe storms,” she said. “If those storms are able to break through this inhibition, they … have the potential to be more severe, and they can tap into more energy when they do so.”

The researchers said they need more data to understand the relationship between climate change and hailstorms. Improved science could also help predict hailstorms and calculate risks better, they said.

The Rocky Mountains of Colorado, the Andes in South America and the Himalayas all have conditions that make them hot spots for hail, Rasmussen said.

Also Read: Climate Change Changes The Cost of Eating Veggies

A May 2017 hailstorm in the Denver area caused $2.3 billion in insurance losses. Last week, hail injured 14 people in Colorado Springs and killed at least five animals at the city zoo. Damage estimates were still being compiled.(VOA)