Hurricane Season is coming. Are you “water ready?”

 

I grew up in lands where hurricanes are commonplace: first on the island of Okinawa, a gob of coral that’s so tiny it’s just a blip on most maps and could be seriously blasted by any size typhoon; and in Florida, a peninsula that puts millions of people out into the path of tropical storms every year.  And, I’ve worked in hurricane recovery efforts. So, I naturally think about prepping for hurricane season around this time of the year.

But, how many of people do?  Do you?  I’ll bet a bunch of people in New Jersey now think about it, when they never had to before.  But really, anyone living along a coastline can be affected and needs to make plans to ensure not only their comfort, but their very survivability as well.

One of the most important things to look at is WATER.

Looks pretty welcoming here, right? But all this saltwater can make access to clean water very difficult.

Looks pretty welcoming here, right? But all this saltwater can make access to clean water very difficult.

You can go for quite a few days – even weeks – without food. You can too without electricity and the ultimate gift of electricity, which in Florida, is AIR CONDITIONING. But you cannot go without water. Water is essential.

In the July issue of Water Technology Magazine, Assistant Editor Jake Mastroianni provides an excellent article on the water element of “Preparing for an emergency.”  I recommend reading the entire article, which isn’t long and includes tidbits like a reminder that the folks who went through Hurricane Andrew went without a safe water supply for over a month!  But, if you don’t have time to click over to the entire article, here’s a lowdown on the list of the 7 tips that Mastroianni offers from the book “WaterPrepper” by Glenn Meder.

1. Know what to do. Looooong BEFORE the power is knocked out, print a copy of the FEMA/Red Cross Booklet on treating water in an emergency situation. The FEMA/RED CROSS Booklet can be found at http://www.fema.gov/pdf/library/f&web.pdf.

2. Keep a minimum of two-week’s worth of bottled water. You should have at least two quarts (half gallon) per person per day. This should be commercially produced bottled water, preferably a well-known brand name. Keep the bottles sealed and stored in a dark, cool area. Rotate the bottles out at least every six months.

3. Also keep a bottle of basic bleach — unopened and non-scented. Do not use scented bleaches, colorsafe bleaches or bleaches with added cleaners, which can be used to disinfect water.

4. Get a stove and fuel for boiling and/or distilling water during an emergency. You should have a stove that can use different types of fuel, and that will allow you to make a basic wood fire.

5. And/or get a water purifier, ideally a non-electric water distiller, which is the best way to purify water during an emergency.

6. You could incorporate an emergency filter into your kit, which could be effective at filtering some contaminants out of the water, as long as you remember to additionally treat the filtered water with one of the FEMA/Red Cross recommended methods.

7. Educate your family and friends about being prepared.  If they aren’t, they will probably become a burden on YOU and your resources. Send each of them a copy of the FEMA/Red Cross Document that’s at http://www.fema.gov/pdf/library/f&web.pdf.

And, number 8 is my own tip.  Don’t wait. By the time weather forecasters say a storm is headed your way, you will have to contend with the mass hysteria and resulting empty shelves at your local grocery store.  

Again, don’t wait. Think about, and do something about, your disaster plan for water soon.

Solar Powers Water

Now, I like this!  Renewable, modern technology energy being paired with the cleaning of water.   

Sandra Chaloux is the president of Chaloux Environmental Communications, Inc.

Sandra Chaloux is the president of Chaloux Environmental Communications, Inc.

Fellow energy blogger Sandra Chaloux reviews some interesting information from Water Technology Magazine is her entry on July 18.  The story is about a municipality and their decision to integrate a solar power system to provide energy for their wastewater treatment plant (WWTP).

Check out her post at Chaloux Environmental Communications …    

Water to Stay on for Maryland County outside Washington, D.C.

IX Power Water Machines, OrganiClearGood news for Prince George’s County in Maryland:  While they are still going to be under water restrictions for a while – no lawn watering, car-washing, and they have to limit their showers and toilet flushes (pew in this weather!) –  they will at least have some water and shouldn’t be totally without for five whole days more or less!  

Yes, good news, but America’s lost the chance to see what’s it’s like to live without running water.   See earlier post on this subject below.

Still – maybe this incident will serve as a real wake-up that we have a dangerously aging infrastructure and while no one wants to pay higher taxes, it’s way past time to do something about it.  Taxes for infrastructure just need to be presented like a 2 x 4 across the butt:  We all pay up, or wake up one day to no water or electricity.  I’d rather pay up in advance.  What about you?

Water: Now U.S. Gets a Taste of Going Without (and in a Heat Wave!)

Thousands in Maryland are frantically preparing to lose running water for as much as five days

We have it so good here.  Really.  Yes, it’s true.  Here in the section of the U.S. that stretches from about the Mid-Atlantic to the Northeast, we are having a heat wave.  It’s not THAT hot compared to say, Arizona, or maybe Death Valley! – but when you factor in the humidity, it’s miserable.  (And I thought I was escaping the relentless steam bath I endured in Orlando, by moving to Northern Virginia.  Ha!)

However, it’s still not so bad.  Most folks seem to have air conditioning or some access to it.  And, there’s plenty of water to drink, swim in, take refreshing showers in, etc.

Until Now.   Splashing water on white.  Splash of water on a surface.

Now, a part of Maryland that borders Washington, D.C. is about to see what it’s like to live like so many people have to outside of the U.S.  Thousands of folks living in Maryland’s Prince George’s County are going to have the water turned off to their homes and businesses.  The reason?  Our country’s notoriously aging infrastructure is rearing its ugly head. In this case, a 54-inch water main is beginning to fail, officials say, and they must shut down part of the system to replace it.  For as many as FIVE days.  And, this event affects not only regular businesses and homes.  It’s knocking out all the business at National Harbor, a popular resort and conference hotel area, and even Joint Base Andrews, the combo Air Force and Navy Base that’s the home of Air Force One. The media is full of advice on which pots and pans to fill up, how much each person will need, etc. but there is no getting around the fact this is going to be a BIG PAIN IN THE NECK for a bunch of Americans, and a good deal that serve our federal government.

Maybe it’s good however, for two reasons:IX Power LLC is offering new clean water technologies

Maybe, just maybe, it will help highlight the issue of our infrastructure, which is literally decrepit in many areas.

And, # 2:  Some folks are going to get a taste of what it’s like to live without running water.

True, no one in Maryland is going to have to walk two miles in bare feet in 100 degree temperatures with a gallon of questionable water on their head like folks must in Africa, Asia, South America and even parts of Mexico.  But, maybe it will help open some eyes in this country about the urgency of the water scarcity situation on this planet. There’s nothing like going without yourself, to bring home others’ suffering.

We simply don’t have enough water on this planet. The total usable freshwater supply for humans and ecosystems is only around 200 000 km3 of water – less than 1 percent of all freshwater resources. According to the United Nations, water scarcity already affects almost every continent and more than 40 percent of the people on our planet. By 2025, 1.8 billion people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity, and two-thirds of the world’s population could be living under water stressed conditions.  To look at it another way, we are over-consuming our natural resources at an unsustainable rate. Scientists at the U.N. say that around 3.5 planets just like Earth would be needed to sustain a global population achieving the current lifestyle of the average European or North American. And realize – everyone on the planet pretty much is striving to live like we do. Fat, happy and with plenty of water.

IX Power Water Machines, OrganiClearSo, what are we going to do about it?

At IX Power we’re working on new ways to clean “produced” water – the water from oil & gas extraction and processing. We have a new way to clean it for use in irrigation, and by livestock and humans. That’s one of our particular water niches. But, we can’t do it alone. More effort by other labs, companies, and government entities needs to be put into finding solutions for the growing problem of water scarcity.

In Maryland, I expect their short-lived water incident will build some, albeit temporary, empathy and sympathy for those who are already without water. But what happens when the water is turned on again?  Worse yet, what happens when the water crisis is no longer a temporary event for Maryland?  For the rest of the U.S.?

Deborah Deal-Blackwell to present “Getting Started on Your P.R. & Marketing” at Denver Innovators Workshop on June 12

   

Deborah Deal-Blackwell

Deborah Deal-Blackwell, APR

     People involved in new business startups, inventors and innovators, even those that have been in business for some time – all can benefit by attending the free Denver Innovators Workshop session “Getting Started on Your P.R. & Marketing” on Wednesday, June 12, at 7:30 p.m. at Cluster Studios. Presented by veteran marketer Deborah Deal-Blackwell, APR, the two-hour event will cover how to start marketing your product or service and what business owners should do first, explore what business owners can do on their own, and when and how to hire a public relations, marketing or advertising firm. In addition, the Workshop will also present the latest available information about business exhibiting and sponsorship opportunities at the upcoming Denver Startup Street Faire in conjunction with Denver Startup Week. To ensure a seat, attendees should RSVP for the event at: http://www.denverinnovators.org.

     Deborah Deal-Blackwell is an Accredited Public Relations practitioner (APR) with 30+ years creating and handling public relations and marketing campaigns for a diverse group of clients from the Caribbean to Moscow, Russia and all across the United States.  Her early career in television was followed by leadership positions at two of Florida’s top advertising and PR firms. She also owned an operated her own successful public relations firm and was the CEO of Angel Flight Southeast, a regional non-profit. From her home base outside Washington, D.C., she has represented clients, including the Hyperion Power Generation small modular reactor company, before the U.S. Congress, Department of Energy, and many other federal agencies. Currently, she is the CEO of the non-profit IX Power Foundation and consults with a handful of clients offering innovative new products. She is a member of the National Press Club and the Public Relations Society of America, both in Washington, D.C., the Friends of the Gum Spring Library, and other organizations.

The Denver Innovators Workshop is a not-for-profit group of innovators and inventors, scientists and geeks, business professionals and students, who came together in 2012 for the purpose of helping each other succeed. In this process, the Workshop participants aspire to actually raise the number of new products, services and companies in the Greater Denver area, while boosting the area’s reputation for innovation.

In addition to its monthly meetings at Cluster Studios, the Denver Innovators Workshop is hosting the Denver Startup Street Faire.  Billed as a “Public Science, Technology, & Manufacturing Faire for Adults & Kids of All Ages,” the Denver Startup Street Faire is being held in conjunction with Denver Startup Week, and with support from the Denver Office of Economic Development and the nonprofit IX Power Foundation. The event will provide inventors, innovators and new businesses the opportunity to showcase their products and services to the public downtown at the Wellington Webb Building on Saturday, September 21, 2013.

 Press Contact: Claire Paulette        Claire at IXPowerFoundation dot org or (505) 661-1000, ext. 902.

It’s the GREEN Economy Stupid! April 22 is Earth Day

The Great Disruption by Paul Gilding

Take a look at The Great Disruption by Paul Gilding. It makes sense to me that the planet has a finite amount of natural resources and we could run out …

Every year it comes and goes with not nearly enough attention from the mass media.  What am I talking about?  EARTH DAY.  Officially it’s Monday, April 22, although EVERY day SHOULD be Earth Day.  Contrary to deniers of climate change, the planet is changing.  Whether mankind is wholly responsible for this is something that’s been hotly debated.  But, while experts and subsidized deniers do their hot debating about who or what caused it, and whether or not it is a normal cyclical change, it continues to get even hotter, and we still have to deal with droughts, storms, loss of shoreline, loss of species, acidification of the oceans, reduced foodstock from the sea, lack of clean fresh water and more! AUGH!

Ignoring, evading, denying, and mocking the problem is not helping and all this takes precious time and resources away from actually doing something to prepare for the change that IS coming.  

The problem for most Americans is that we live our luxurious lives (compared to that of other nations) in air conditioned offices and homes far, far removed from the processes of farming, water purification, and energy resource extraction.  We don’t have to get our hands dirty.  We are only affected by increased prices.

But, this somewhat blissful shelter from the realities of climate change is not going to continue for long for Americans.  Soon, it will no longer be a problem for “the poor folks in Africa,”  Nope, the problem is going to come home and hit us hard, and not just in the form of an extra dollar per gallon of gas.

i’ve been reading “The Great Disruption – How the Climate Crisis Will Transform the Global Economy” and I would suggest it be read by everyone. Basically, the author talks about how climate change is just one of many factors that is going to affect the way we live on this planet.  It’s the kickstarter that people notice, but there are other factors such as the gobbling up of natural resources in the making of “stuff” that is going to change our idea of a successful and productive life.  Simply, we won’t have the natural resources to keep making stuff; we’re going to have to recycle to get even the basic materials and everyone is going to have to live with less stuff – particularly less “throwaway” stuff.  It’s a good read, but I’ve also added photos here of some of my other favorites.  

Take a look; pick up one of these books. Knowledge is power. Sticking your head in the sand will just irritate your eyes so you can’t see the truth.

Happy Earth Day everyone!

See more books and links to Earth Day websites below, including one where you can get the great bumper sticker that says, “It’s the Green Economy Stupid!”

Hot - Living through the next Fifty Years on Earth

Another insightful book discussing a proactive approach to climate change and dwindling natural resources …

T-Shirts, posters, and my favorite bumper sticker “It’s the GREEN Economy Stupid.” can be found on the home page of http://www.earthday.org

 http://www.earthday.org

http://www.epa.gov/earthday/

http://www.unesco.org/new/en/natural-sciences/environment/earth-sciences/

 

Earth - Making Life on a Tough New Planet, Bill McKibben

Earth – Making Life on a Tough New Planet by Bill McKibben – more suggested reading!

 

The End of Growth

The End of Growth is another good read.

International Women’s Day is Friday, March 8 – Concerns about Water, Literacy & Violence

Friday, March 8, is International Women’s Day.   It seems to me, unfortunately, that women in the United States do not observe this important date as much as we should.  Maybe it’s because, even with the inequalities that remain in our country, we still have it pretty good — good enough to make us complacent and forgetful even, of how much we have to be grateful for and celebrate.

But as the “lucky ones,” relatively speaking, I think we owe it to our sisters in other parts of the world that don’t have it so well, to observe this day and do something to help those women with less opportunity.

From my travels, experience, reading and just years of life on the planet, three of the things that strike me as core issues for women today, particularly in countries with emerging economies are:

*  Water (and subsequently health)    

*  Literacy / Education

*  Violence         

International Women's Day March 8 2013 - will these girls have a future as adult women? Will they even survive to become women?

International Women’s Day March 8 2013 – will these girls have a future as adult women? Will they even survive to become women?

Lack of Clean Water – and therefore health

Of the 1.3 billion people living in abject poverty, the majority are women and children. With this poverty, most often comes a lack of access to clean water.  In addition to the physical harm that comes with having to carry heavy loads of water (and its often not even somewhat clean water) long distances, women in poor regions with no access to running water lose a lot of time – time to take care of their children, educate themselves and their children, and time to to spend on a livelihood to improve their lot in life.

But, they also lose their health, which continues the cycle of poverty because they are too sick to work at jobs or raising food.

According to the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation (JMP), “37% per cent of the developing world’s population – 2.5 billion people – lack improved sanitation facilities, and over 780 million people still use unsafe drinking water sources. Inadequate access to safe water and sanitation services, coupled with poor hygiene practices, kills and sickens thousands of children every day, and leads to impoverishment and diminished opportunities for thousands more.  

The majority of people living in poverty are women and children.

The majority of people living in poverty are women and children.

In fact, every 20 seconds, a child dies as a result of poor sanitation. That’s 1.5 million preventable deaths each year.  

Poor sanitation, water and hygiene have many other serious repercussions. Children – and particularly girls – are denied their right to education because  their schools lack private and decent sanitation facilities. Poor farmers and wage earners are less productive due to illness, health systems are overwhelmed and national economies suffer. Without WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene), sustainable development is impossible.”

 Violence Against Women 

It is when trying to transport water to their villages on unprotected trips down to water sources that women are often subjected to violence via regional conflict. This violence against them often involves sexual brutality and horrendous acts. But, one of the biggest segments in violence against women is domestic violence. Statistics from the United Nations state that in far too many countries 7 in 10 women can expect to be beaten, raped, abused or mutilated in their lifetimes. Aside from the obvious results – death or obvious injury – this violence can result in physical, mental, sexual, reproductive health and other health problems, and may increase vulnerability to HIV.  

The World Health Organization has concluded that violence against women – particularly intimate partner violence and sexual violence against women – are major public health problems and violations of women’s human rights.  A World Bank report, which estimates that more women aged 15-44 are killed violently than die of malaria, HIV, cancer, accidents and war combined.

Studies have shown that for both perpetrator and victim, attitudes accepting of violence and gender inequality, and low education or illiteracy, play a major role in the problem.

Illiteracy

Which brings us to illiteracy.  In my neighborhood, we just celebrated the opening of the new long-awaited Gum Spring Library. On the first day over 6,500 people visited the library – many of those were women and couples with young children. More than 14,500 materials were checked out the first weekend. But, in way too many countries, a library – even the ability to read – is a luxury people will never live to see.  And this lack of literacy fosters not only conditions that lead to violence, but help to keep women, and men, in a cycle of poverty that includes a lack of access to clean water, which makes people sick and keeps them from working to pull themselves out of that poverty.

In spite of the fact that most development agencies identify women’s literacy as the single most important factor in development, one out of every three women in the world cannot read and write. And, in some countries, men would like to keep it that way.  Remember the attack in October by the Taliban on 15-year-old Malala Yousafzai for her attempts to promote girls’ education in Pakistan. 

Lack of water. Violence. Illiteracy.  They are intertwined in keeping women around the globe from achieving their potential and contributing to the betterment of the human race, the environment, and the planet.

On Friday, March 8, please observe International Women’s Day – make a vow to take a step – even just one small one within the next week – for the benefit of a woman somewhere who’s suffering, and for women everywhere. Make a donation, write a Congressman, talk to your daughters or a class at school or church about women’s issue such as domestic violence … if we all did SOMETHING, we could make a difference 

Read more at the following web sites:

Amnesty International   

International Center for Research on Women      

UN Women – the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women     

World Health Organization    

CNN – “interesting story on women by the numbers” 

IX Power Executives celebrate local event – NEW Library!

On a personal note: This may not have anything  to do with industry DIRECTLY, but I just had to share that we are finally getting a library out here in the wilds of South Riding / Stone Ridge Virginia (Loudoun County). Our beautiful, long-awaited brand spanking new library opens Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013. To lean more, visit my personal blog at:  http://www.SaintBlackwell.com

Loudoun County’s new Gum Spring Public Library has been years in the making, and now it’s finally here!

Loudoun County's new Gum Spring Library

The new Gum Spring Library will open February 23. It’s a beautifully open and sunny facility packed with brand spanking new books.

Europe’s Water Policies a Mess says London School of Economics

 

Water prices going up?  

Snow, but not enough water in Europe!

You may think Europe has enough clean water. After all, they get a bunch of snow every year! But, that doesn’t mean they have enough good old H2O …

As the planet struggles with the fair distribution of clean water for all, and the cleaning of dirty water, it’s inevitable!  In Europe, they have a problem that must be dealt with immediately.

IX Power’s expert on all things Europe, Dr. Edward (Ned) Swan, has found another interesting article to share on the topic of the coming price of water.

Please visit the London School of Economics & Political Science blog   

The High Costs of Free Water

Although communities pay to have water IX Power Clean Waterdelivered to them, the actual WATER has been FREE thus far. But maybe not for long. Take a look at this story that Dr. Ned Swan, U.K. Managing Director and International General Counsel at IX Power Ltd found recently. It really does make you think … click below …

The High Costs of Free Water

Be sure to visit Dr. Swan’s LINKEDIN Group “Water Market” for other news . . . 

Dr. Edward Swan, IX Power

Dr. Edward Swan, IX Power