Tuesday, March 21, 2017

World Water Day 2017

World Water Day snuck up on me this year and I've got nothing ready to hit 'publish.'  Please read my archive of previous year's entries about World Water Day.

I write often about water in general.

Remember when your elementary school teacher told you that water on the west side of the continental divide would end up in the Pacific Ocean and water on the east side would end up in the Atlantic Ocean?

Well, that's not true any longer.  Whether I am in Boulder, CO or Los Angeles County, I'm using Colorado River Water.

Both Boulder and LA's Metropolitan Water District have several water supplies.  Approximately 50% of Boulder County's water supply comes from the Western Slope, via the Colorado-BigThompson Project.  LA County imports about 45% it's water (30% from Northern CA and 15% from the Colorado River.)

BTW, water is heavy and it takes a lot of energy to move it.  Thus, an easy way to reduce your carbon footprint is to use less water.


  1. I didn't even know World Water Day was a thing. Thanks for enlightening me! I've been thinking about water lately as the Victorian Government (state in Aus where I live) have just signed a contract with a desalination plant to supply a minimum of water each year, whether we need it or not. It's been a total mess - the plant was commissioned a few years against the best expert advice, instead of the recommended alternatives of recycling Melbourne's water and/or installing mandatory rainwater tanks in houses.

    It has become this white elephant for that government (who lost power partly because of it) and subsequent state governments, as it has a HUGE environmental profile. It was placed in a location where it could endanger local marine life, in a otherwise tranquil coastal retreat. It uses a vast amount of electricity to run, and most ridiculously, our water supplies have never dipped to the level where we've actually had to turn it on! (Despite years of drought.) So the state pays a fortune every year just for maintenance, and some sort of ongoing fee - the contracts were incredibly shabby and not in favour of the state.

    It really irks me that we could have had a progressive water policy, incorporating the best environmental practice at the time, and it was thrown out in favour of the Big Desalination Plant.

    1. I'm worried that they same thing is happening in CA. Toilet to tap costs half as much $ and energy as desal (using the same polymer membrane technology.) Conservation and rainwater harvesting are cheaper still.

      There must be $ to be made building and operating desal plants. We need to make the business case that toilet to tap also requires plants and is cheaper.

  2. Anonymous12:55

    I have a concern for a friend who may buy a condo in Palm Springs, CA. Water is the concern – I understand there is a huge aquifer but given water shortages in so many places, is a huge aquifer enough to sustain a long-term residency?
    Vancouver Barbara

    1. There are now 200+ golf courses in the Coachella valley so that developers can sell 'golf course homes.' The aquifer is being pumped unsustainably so that they have to drill deeper and deeper wells.

      While they do that, natural springs that sustain wildlife are drying up.

      There was a lot of life in the desert. I took a desert ecology class with 2 week-long field trips out there (comparing wet and dry years.) I'm pretty passionate about the CA desert.

      The homes are causing mass extinction to unique desert wildlife.


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