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Water Everywhere, But Not A Drop…

Like charity:water, GOOD Magazine is also leveraging pop culture to spur citizens to take action. They've created a three-video series, rooted in familiar water-oriented scenes from iconic films and television, to demonstrate that life without clean water can be a very frightening prospect:

Water Everywhere, but Not a Drop…

And if you're looking for straight facts without the fluff, this brief documentary from the International Red Cross provides specific information about how chronic water and sanitation challenges are affecting Zambia.You can help solve the global water crisis by contributing to these worthy organizations -- and by sharing their messages with your friends.Yours,Ramya Raghavan

But Indians are very sceptical about the private sector (despite it being the only sector that actually works). They may well ask: is there any evidence of the private sector working well to supply water? Yes, there is very strong evidence. In fact, there is even stronger evidence that wherever government supplies water, it not only stifles innovation but creates huge inefficiencies. For hundreds of years water was supplied to London households by the private sector till its government, in a big blunder, took over the water supply function in 1902. Fortunately, Margaret Thatcher privatised it once again, with regulatory oversight. Today, four private water companies supply water to the residents of London.

Interested in blogging for We will be happy to have you on board as a blogger, if you have the knack for writing. Just drop in a mail at with a brief bio and we will get in touch with you.

The moon lacks the bodies of liquid water that are a hallmark of Earth but scientists said on Monday lunar water is more widespread than previously known, with water molecules trapped within mineral grains on the surface and more water perhaps hidden in ice patches residing in permanent shadows.

While research 11 years ago indicated water was relatively widespread in small amounts on the moon, a team of scientists is now reporting the first unambiguous detection of water molecules on the lunar surface. At the same time, another team is reporting that the moon possesses roughly 15,000 square miles (40,000 square kilometres) of permanent shadows that potentially could harbour hidden pockets of water in the form of ice.

Water is a precious resource and a relatively plentiful lunar presence could prove important to future astronaut and robotic missions seeking to extract and utilize water for purposes such as a drinking supply or a fuel ingredient.

A team led by Casey Honniball of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Centre in Maryland detected molecular water on the lunar surface, trapped within natural glasses or between debris grains. Previous observations have suffered from ambiguity between water and its molecular cousin hydroxyl, but the new detection used a method that yielded unambiguous findings.

NEWS: We confirmed water on the sunlit surface of the Moon for the 1st time using @SOFIAtelescope. We don't know yet if we can use it as a resource, but learning about water on the Moon is key for our #Artemis exploration plans. Join the media telecon at

The only way for this water to survive on the sunlit lunar surfaces where it was observed was to be embedded within mineral grains, protecting it from the frigid and foreboding environment. The researchers used data from the SOFIA airborne observatory, a Boeing 747SP aircraft modified to carry a telescope.

The second study, also published in the journal Nature Astronomy, focused upon so-called cold traps on the moon, regions of its surface that exist in a state of perpetual darkness where temperatures are below about negative 260 degrees Fahrenheit (negative 163 degrees Celsius). That is cold enough that frozen water can remain stable for billions of years.

NASA is planning a return of astronauts to the moon, a mission envisioned as paving the way for a later journey carrying a crew to Mars. Accessible sources where water can be harvested on the moon would beneficial to those endeavours.

But do not expect to quench your thirst down there. The water is not liquid or in any other familiar form like ice or vapor. It is locked inside the molecular structure of minerals called ringwoodite and wadsleyite in mantle rock that possesses the remarkable ability to absorb water like a sponge.

It is that most glorious time of the year again. The days begin to get longer and warmer, the snow starts to melt, and the hillsides and mountains explode into color and greenery. Bozeman is a veritable smorgasbord of outdoor activities in these all too short summer months. Hiking, camping, fishing, floating, and biking are all within a short distance and easily accessible here in our beautiful city. But when it comes to outdoor aquatics facilities, splash pads or pools and water parks, unfortunately, Bozeman falls short. However, never fear good citizens, there are folks in high places working hard to change all that and bring some new and improved swim and splash centers to the Gallatin Valley.

Rain is drinking water in Tuvalu, so we were more than glad to deal with the turbulence, and were happy as we landed on the precarious runway at Funafuti international airport, (surely one of the smallest in the world) to see the tropical storm we had left in Fiji, had followed us and was in full force here too, soaking the amassed crowds who had come to see the plane; a twice weekly event that causes quite a stir in the local community.

Additionally, although the North Coventry Water Authority has not experienced a loss of positive water pressure due to the break, it nonetheless has issued a boil water advisory to its customers, just as a precaution.

Guinea is nicknamed West Africa's "watertower" because it contains the headwaters of a number of the region'smajor rivers, including the Senegal and the Niger. In parts of the country'sinterior, average annual rainfall is close to four metres.

And yet, breakdowns at the national watercompany's treatment centres have left major towns in the interior likeKindia and Labe with little or no running water for weeks. N'zerekore,near the Liberian border, has been without for the last five years.

"It's been two years since we haddrinkable water in our neighbourhood," Thiany Yansane, a local councillor,told IRIN. "That's why I always keep jerry-cans in my car in orderto fill them up with water at the office."

Mohammed Dangoura, a Red Cross officialin Conakry, says that there are two reasons, both linked to the country'spoverty, for people's inability to get access to proper drinking water.First, the vast majority simply do not have the money to pay for the service.And second, the national water company cannot afford to provide it.

"This (water issue) is not out ofcharacter with the problems that Guineans are living with in every aspectof their lives," said Mike McGovern, the West Africa project directorat Crisis Group, adding that similar difficulties exist in other areaslike transportation, health and education.

While water cuts are not uncommon inGuinea, the present shortages are especially difficult for this mostlyIslamic country as last week marked the beginning of Ramadan, a periodin which many Muslims go without food and drink during daylight hours.As evening falls and the fast is broken, people require access to waterfor replenishment, a fact which the government readily admits.

"We have called together officialsfrom the interior of the country to ensure that everybody has access towater during the holy month of Ramadan," Fatoumata Binta Diallo, Guinea'senergy minister, told IRIN last week.

According to water company officialswho wished to remain anonymous, the utility's current financial woes aredue to poor management and difficulties collecting revenue as a resultof the number of people who siphon off water supplies illegally.

That line, from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, captures a truism -- we cannot drink salt water to quench our thirst. But why not? The answer lies in understanding the process of osmosis. Osmosis is the process whereby water molecules move from an area of higher concentration to an area of lower concentration. Osmosis occurs to stabilize a system. Think of putting ice cubes in a cup of hot chocolate. Besides being diluted with the water, the resulting liquid in the cup reaches an equilibrium between the two temperature extremes. This is similar to the way osmosis works. A higher concentration of water molecules will seek to reach an equilibrium with a lower concentration of water molecules.

But what does that have to do with drinking salt water? Our cells are permeable membranes. That means some things can move in and out of cells through the cell wall, while other things cannot. Salt water is nothing more than water with suspended particles of natural salts. These salt particles are too large to pass through the cell walls. When taken into the bloodstream, salt water stays in the blood plasma and does not pass into the cells. In fact the reverse occurs.

If we were to drink salt water, and our blood plasma takes in the salt water, the salt in the water takes up space that the water molecules would normally take up. In effect, there is a lower concentration of water molecules in salt water. The water that is contained within the cells, is low in salt. That means there is a higher concentration of water molecules within the cells. So instead of water entering the cells to replenish them, water actually leaves the cells, dehydrating the cells even more. The more salt water you drink, the thirstier you become, until the major systems of your body start to shut down. Leave the salt water to the fish.

RWSN welcomes blog contributions from guest bloggers to the RWSN blog. We aim to raise awareness and foster exchange of opinions and experiences in the rural water supply sector worldwide. For more information, see the guidelines for RWSN blog contributions


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