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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

Next Story

New Device to Detect Low Fluoride in Water

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has set 1.5 mg/litre as the maximum limit for fluoride in drinking water

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This September 2015 photo from NOAA Fisheries shows an adult female orca and her calf, in Washington state's Puget Sound. Researchers reported Jan. 11, 2019, that there's a new calf among killer whales that live in the waters between Washington state and Canada. VOA

Researchers have built a new device to accurately measure fluoride concentrations using only a few drops of water with even low contamination, finds a new study.

In India, low concentration of fluoride – below 1.5 mg/litre – is used to prevent tooth decay and strengthening of bones. But if it touches above 2 ppm it could cause serious health issues, like dental and bone disease, especially in children and developing foetuses.

That’s where the device – SION-105 – comes in. It’s portable, considerably cheaper than ones in use now, and can be used on-site by anyone. In addition, it is luminescent by default, but darkens when it encounters fluoride ions.

Measuring fluoride at low concentrations with sufficient accuracy is expensive and requires a well-equipped chemical lab.

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A man snorkels in an area called the “Coral Gardens” near Lady Elliot Island, on the Great Barrier Reef, off Queensland, Australia, June 11, 2015. Scientists recently found similar-looking coral reefs in much deeper water off Tasmania. VOA

Kyriakos Stylianou at EPFL Valais Wallis in Switzerland said SION-105 detects fluorides by adding only a few droplets of water and by monitoring the colour change of the metal-organic frameworks (MOFs).

The study was published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

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Adding fluoride to water has been a common practice in many countries, including the US, Australia, Brazil, Malaysia, India and Vietnam, especially in low concentrations – below 1.5 mg/litre.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has set 1.5 mg/litre as the maximum limit for fluoride in drinking water. (IANS)