Thirty six days after the original Deep Horizon explosion and the beginning of the United States' worst eco-crisis ever, BP will seek to end this oil spill nightmare with its two-day Top Kill procedure. The cement mud mix would effectively plug the well, the latest in many failed attempts to end the oil spill. In the latest effort to quell the spill and public dissatisfaction, BP will show the procedure live on video. But what remains to be seen is what will finally be killed, the oil spill or the last vestiges of public trust for BP and the Obama Administration's crisis response team.
UNEP (the United Nations Environmental Programme) is a Live Earth non-profit partner. This was originally posted at UNEP.org.
Geneva (Switzerland)/Nairobi (Kenya), 16 April 2010 - "Every step and every drop counts to solve the water crisis."
This is the rallying cry of the global Live Earth Run for Water campaign which on Sunday 18 April will mobilize communities in more than 175 cities around the world to raise awareness of the growing scarcity of safe, clean water.
A series of 6km community runs or walks will take place over the course of 24 hours, accompanied in some cities by educational Water Villages and sustainably-managed concerts featuring international artists.
The average American home has 10,000 items in it. We need storage units and cabinets in just about every room to house all these things. But you would need an Olympic-size swimming pool to store all the water it takes to make what we so casually call our stuff.
In fact, if you were to release all the water in all the items in our homes, at least 200,000 gallons would gush out like in some mad scene in a disaster movie. Americans expend a lot of water spending $78.5 billion a year on furniture. Heres why: Most of the furniture we own (38 percent) is made of wood. Just 1 board foot of lumber takes about 5.4 gallons of water to make. Wood, of course, comes from trees, and last time I checked, it took water to grow trees.
Guest contributor Arjen van der Wal is an environmentalist and drilling expert at Practica Foundation, an Akvo support partner. Here he describes the opportunities possible when people are trained to drill wells.
Say you want to extract water from the ground, because you have had enough of carrying water around for six hours a day, and have more useful things to do with your time. And say you live in a region where the ground water is of good quality, and the soil consists of sand or clay. Then you might want to have a borehole, preferably near your house, where you can get nice, clean, safe water, without walking too far. What are your options?
The need for clean toilets and sanitation around the world can be truly over whelming. Today, 2.5 billion people on the planet lack adequate sanitation. According to UNICEF, some 665 million people in India practice open defecation. This lack of sanitation has horrific consequences. Diarrheal diseases kill more children in the developing world than HIV/AIDS. That's almost 5,000 children dying every day. According to UNICEF, 1,000 children die each day in India from diarrheal diseases.
Most of us in the United States take a vacation every year. More than 30 million Americans fly somewhere outside the country annually, and increasingly, we are opting to fly instead of driving domestically. And when we get to our destinations, we stay mostly in hotels or motels. Its there that we really let the water dogs out: The average luxury hotel rooms estimated water use is 475 gallons per day, which amounts to more than the average US household uses! We turn into traveling, water-sucking giants who splash about merrily, drinking, bathing, steaming, basking in hot tubs, and waiting in line at aqua parks in the desert. Yes, we are a curious lot in different senses of the word. Still, before we even leave our homes and begin acting water-crazed while on vacation, we waste loads of water in ways we may not even have thought of.
Nearly 150 million Americans attend a baseball, basketball, hockey, or football game each year.
Team and stadium owners, as well as league officials, are getting wise to different ways to save while still providing a great experience for fans.
The National Football League has a green advisory committee to help it, among others things, stop water waste. The PGA of America teamed up with Audubon International to conserve water and encourage wildlife preservation. And Major League Baseball hooked up with the Natural Resources Defense Council to create sustainable stadium operations and team practices.
Water savings is a top priority for sports professionals and enthusiasts because water is so critical to game playing, whether its to keep the field green or the athletes hydrated.
World Water Day is recognized every year on March 22nd. It's a day meant to recognize the single most important chemical compound for the preservation of human life -- water. In support of World Water Week, Underwriters Laboratories is asking consumers to pledge to reduce their household water usage and has launched an interactive ‘Save Your Water’ consumption calculator that shows consumers how to make simple lifestyle changes and take the pledge.