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July 2010 Archives

The real news is why a 50% rate hike is required - WATER CONSERVATION. Per the story linked below:


Chambers attributes the "sharp spike" this year to a drop in water use.

"There has been a significant drop in the consumption of water," Chambers said. "When the city asked people to conserve water, people responded and significantly reduced their consumption. When the council did that, we were acutely aware - (Councilman) Doug Crane talked about it often - that would affect the utility itself, and the drop in consumption impacted revenues significantly."


So the easy net of the story is we pay if we conserve and we pay if we don't.

Well not quite.  Yes it is true that without water conservation the revenues to the water utility would have been the same.  But the conservation really did save water and energy. 

The new rates probably really more closely reflect what the water company should have been charging in the first place. But this is definitely the first time I have seen a water official publicly state that conserving water will drive water rates up.  Though I am not sure I totally buy the argument. Less water used means less water obtained/purchased, less water processed and less transported as well as substantially lower power bills.  It may mean they did not want to cut staff thinking that demand will rise again and they will need these folks when it does. 

Here is a link to the story:

What do you think?
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Albuquerque and Santa Fe have had water conservation programs for well over a decade, and both have been very successful. Yet their approaches to saving this precious resource in the arid Southwest are different. . Since 1995, Albuquerque has reduced per capita use by 36%, Santa Fe by 42%. Santa Fe's water use is now substantially less than the US average, while Albuquerque is likely to fall below the US average soon. Both have made tremendous strides in conserving life-giving water. What lessons can we learn by comparing these cities?

This article explores the two cities programs and how much they have saved.  As it shows it is possible to greatly reduce consumption without changing our lifestyle.  And yes, it is possible to go even further.  Read the full article >>

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I recently posted an article on my website dealing with Solar Disinfection.  Dr.Anumakonda Jagadeesh was kind enough to allow me to republish this article in full with tables included in the complete article.  An excerpt of this article is below.

One might wonder how Solar Disinfection and Rainwater Harvesting are related.  Through the website I get many, many questions on how to filter rainwater.  These questions come from readers around the world as well as organizations interested in providing low-cost, low maintenance drinking water systems.  Solar Disinfection is one method that has proven to be effective as Dr. Jagadeesh research again shows.  His low-cost design is perfect for locations with lots of sun and do not have access to clean, purified potable water.


Every 8 seconds, a child dies from water related disease around the globe. 50% of people in developing countries suffer from one or more water-related diseases. 80% of diseases in the developing countries are caused by contaminated water. Providing safe drinking water to the people has been a major challenge for Governments in developing countries. Conventional technologies used to disinfect water are: ozonation, chlorination and artificial UV radiation.

Treatment to control waterborne microbial contaminants by exposure to sunlight in clear vessels that allows the combined germicidal effects of both UV radiation and heat has been developed and put into practice.  Though 6 bottles were used in the system(each of 1 liter capacity), larger units with up to 100 bottles can be designed. The unit destroyed 99.99% of bacterial coli forms both in well water and waste water samples in 5 hours.

Link to Complete Study
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