Water Spouts will speak volubly and endlessly about all the issues concerning water. The ongoing degradation, and growing scarcity, of the water supply here in the US, and the rest of the world. The continued absence of potable water in so many parts of the world. The work being done by NGOs, and charities, in the third world, to help alleviate the situation. The emphasis on WASH ( Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene ) so health and healthy water are maintained. "Water Spouts" will spout it all out.
Mobile Technology boosts Water Security for the Poor
A young girl pumps water from a well in ther village of Manugay in the
Pech River Valley of Afghanistan's Kunar Province June 26, 2012.
Information technology is a
powerful tool for experts working to provide secure access to water for
personal use, food production and business in developing nations.
Giving poor people proper access to safe water and sanitation would save 2.5 million people a year from dying from diarrhoea and other diseases spread by a lack of hygiene, according to charity WaterAid.
The widespread availability of mobile phones has enabled the
development of low-cost solutions aimed at improving water security and
Three quarters of the world's 7 billion people have access to a mobile phone, according to a World Bank report. There are 6 billion mobile subscriptions worldwide, of which almost 5 billion are in developing countries.
This is where mobile networks come in -- they have led to the
development of communication services that aim to increase the
transparency and reliability of water delivery. For example, mobile
technology has allowed service providers to monitor water supply to
prevent theft and leakages, while offering more effective repairs and
But these innovative efforts still face huge political and logistical
challenges, complicated by the risks linked to climate change, experts
Here are five mobile strategies that are already helping people get better access to water and sanitation.
Timely data on the state of water infrastructure is key to implementing a secure water supply. Akvo FLOW
(Field Level Operations Watch) is a mobile application that uses
Android-operated devices, the internet and map-reporting tools in Google
Maps and Google Earth to collect, analyse and report data for
monitoring water supplies.
The system, which has been used in 17 countries in Africa, Asia,
Central America and South America since 2010, was developed by two
non-profit organisations: Water For People,
which helps communities in developing countries access clean drinking
water; and Akvo, which creates web and mobile software to improve the
delivery of humanitarian aid.
In 2011, the Liberian government, assisted by the World Bank, used Akvo FLOW to map 10,000 water points in Liberia.
SMART-CARD TAP SYSTEM
developed by Denmark-based Grundfos AS, uses submersible borehole pumps
powered by solar or wind power to deliver water to an elevated storage
Gravity forces the water to flow into a tap unit in a small building,
which also serves as a payment facility. Customers buy water credits
that are stored on a "smart card", using mobile-phone banking. They
insert the smart card into a slot at the tap unit to purchase water.
A percentage of the money goes towards service and maintenance.
Lifelink staff can monitor water pressure, temperature and the amount of
water tapped from anywhere in the world via the internet.
The company, which provides the service in urban and rural
communities, says it has implemented drinking-water supply systems for
100,000 people in Kenya, and is expanding into other African countries
WATER MANAGEMENT BY SMS
A mobile-to-web platform designed to regulate water management is improving water delivery in West Africa.
service - used by 240 small public-private piped water schemes in
Senegal, Mali, Benin and Niger - allows water-service operators to share
information with national authorities and financial institutions via
Text messages provide data about water production levels, account
balances and service disruptions. mWater generates real-time reports,
and also archives data to provide water-scheme managers with monthly
reports, which can be emailed or downloaded.
Today, more than 25 percent of rural and small-town populations in
western and central Africa are served by small piped water schemes, a
proportion that is expected to rise to 80 percent by 2015, according to
the Manobi Development Foundation.
Experts estimate that a third of handpumps supplying water to some of
the world's poorest people are broken at any given time, according to
Rob Hope, a researcher at Britain’s University of Oxford Mobile/Water for Development (MW4D) programme.
Hope is part of a team developing a mobile system that coordinates
access to, payment for and upkeep of handpumps, which are often
installed and then left for the local community to manage with varying
The "smart handpumps" automatically transmit water use and
performance data over the mobile network, sending a text message to
alert engineers of a breakdown.
Data provides water output estimates that show fluctuations in daily
to seasonal demand levels. The mobile application is being tested in 70
villages in Kenya's drought-prone Kyuso district, as part of a year-long
pilot project funded by Britain's Department for International
HANDPUMP SERVICE CENTRES
More than half of India’s village handpumps are not working and
remain out of use for more than 30 days due to a shortage of mechanics,
according to WaterAid.
In response, the charity has set up handpump service centres,
known locally as Public Panchayat Participatory (PPP) centres, operated
by locally trained mechanics in two districts of Uttar Pradesh and
The condition of village handpumps is monitored by the centres and repairs coordinated by mobile phone.
Between January 2011 and March 2012, the centres oversaw the repair
of more than 4,500 handpumps serving almost 338,000 people, according to
Only 6 percent of the repairs took longer than two days to complete,
and this was usually down to remote location, the need for major work or
a lack of spare parts, the charity says.