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Old August 7th, 2007, 06:27 AM   #1
hkskyline
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Water Shortages in Our Cities

Turkish cities grapple with water shortages; authorities consider delaying school for a month
2 August 2007

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) - Turkey's two major cities are grappling with water shortages after record-low snow and rain falls in the winter and searing summer temperatures, officials said Thursday.

Reservoirs are less than 5 percent full in the capital, Ankara, which has a 4 million population, according to the country's water authority, and the municipality on Wednesday began imposing two-days on, two-days off of water cuts at homes.

A project to divert water from a nearby river was launched in March, but the water was not expected to reach the city until November.

Authorities were considering delaying the start of the school year by a month -- to mid-October -- to avert possible spread of diseases at schools, Mayor Melih Gokcek said. Hospitals were being supplied with groundwater carried by tankers.

Water cuts could be increased to four days, Ankara water department director Ihsan Fincan said Thursday. The municipality was planning to send 16,000 of its employees on summer vacation to save on water in the city, he said.

The reservoirs of Istanbul, a metropolis of more than 10 million, have sufficient water to last another three to four months, according to water authority estimates.

Istanbul has no plans to impose similar water cuts, Mayor Kadir Topbas said. The city was also working against time to divert water from nearby rivers.

Mustafa Cagrici, the mufti or chief cleric of Istanbul, told private news channel NTV on Thursday that special prayers were being said across the city for rain.

"In times of trouble, it is natural for people to seek Allah's help for problems that they cannot solve," he said.

Sales of large, plastic water containers have surged in Ankara and elsewhere, with residents stockpiling on water, Posta newspaper reported. Sales of bottled drinking water were also up.

In Ankara, the containers, which sold for about $4.50 before the water cuts, were now selling for $13.

Bans on watering lawns and washing cars with hoses have been in place for months and there have been television ads and Friday sermons at mosques to encourage people to save on water.

The drought has affected agriculture in parts of the country, preventing irrigation and drying up crops.
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Old August 8th, 2007, 02:07 AM   #2
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Yeah I heard about the "water-less" days in the radio... wtf - if that happened here I would go crazy - I mean how can you deny your people the single most basic thing to survive?


No risk of running out here in Denmark though.. our underground is packed with crystal clear water
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Old August 8th, 2007, 02:27 AM   #3
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Wow, that's really bad, the Mediterranean has really been suffering from a brutally hot summer.
Related to that here in Britain it's been an exceedingly wet summer (goddamn lazy Azores high), but drought has been an ever increasing problem over the past few years here too. Obviously it's not nearly so bad, and Turkey is more suited to such heat, but droughts really are the worst things. I guess it's reasonable to shut off main supplies when the reservoirs are so low, but there should be adequate relief. - Say communal taps for streets which give people drinking water (so they don't need to buy bottles on the effected days) but do not allow for more wasteful usage. I wasn't around in the 1975/76 drought in England, but I've heard stories of that nature.
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Old August 8th, 2007, 08:33 AM   #4
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As scary as it sounds, this will force people to think entirely differently about conserving water there. If Turkish are anything like Americans, it takes a disaster to make anything happen and sometimes not even then.
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Old August 8th, 2007, 07:32 PM   #5
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Zimbabwe city warns of health risk as it cuts water

HARARE, July 18 (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's second largest city, Bulawayo, warned residents on Wednesday to guard against outbreaks of disease as it was forced to cut their water supply. Authorities said they had decommissioned one of Bulawayo's three remaining dams because water levels were too low, leaving in operation only two of the five dams that supply the southern city of about one million people.

Bulawayo has faced water problems before but this is the first time it has had to issue a health warning and officials said the water shortage was likely to get worse.

"The city council is aware that water cuts may result in the outbreak of diseases and we wish to advise members of the public to take preventive measures," Bulawayo spokesman Pathisa Nyathi was quoted by the state-owned Chronicle newspaper as saying.

"Water will be available for seven hours in every two days and during that time people are advised to fill their containers and cover them up," Nyathi said.

Last month more than 20 children died from a diarrhoea outbreak in a Zimbabwe mining town over a two-week period after drinking suspected contaminated water, official media reported.

Urban areas in Zimbabwe are struggling to provide services due to ageing infrastructure, including burst sewer pipes, and because foreign currency shortages have hampered imports of raw materials such as water treatment chemicals.

Earlier this year several people contracted cholera in two Harare townships after drinking contaminated water from shallow wells due to a breakdown in municipal services.

Inflation in Zimbabwe has risen above 4,500 percent, the highest in the world, while an eight-year economic recession has hit urban workers and resulted in shortages of fuel and food.
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Old August 9th, 2007, 06:07 PM   #6
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Ankara mayor under fire in water crisis

ANKARA, Aug 9 (Reuters) - The mayor of Turkey's capital Ankara is facing growing calls for his resignation and for government intervention after a fourth day without water in the city of four million people.

Ankara began water rationing nine days ago after levels in reservoirs feeding the city fell to just 4 percent of capacity. This means there is only water for two more months.

The municipality then had to turn off the taps completely after a major pipe burst earlier this week. It now says water will be flowing again to the whole city by Friday.

"In a normal country, a mayor who lacks so much foresight even though he has been in power for 13 years apologises to the people and resigns immediately," said Meral Tamer, a columnist in liberal Milliyet newspaper.

Newspapers asked Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, who was a popular mayor of Istanbul, Turkey's largest city, in the 1990s, to intervene in the crisis. Mayor Melih Gokcek belongs to Erdogan's centre-right, Islamist-rooted AK Party.

Gokcek has blamed the water shortage on global warming, but his critics say he failed to invest in new dams over the years despite repeated warnings from experts.

They say Gokcek preferred image-boosting investments such as expensive highways to spending on vital infrastructure and that this has left the city more vulnerable to climate shocks.

Gokcek has rejected the charges of negligence and has promised to bring water from a nearby river to Ankara by the end of this year.

Much of Turkey is suffering one of its driest years on record, but the capital, located in the sunbaked, dry interior, has been especially hard hit.

The future regime of water supply cuts has yet to be determined.

Gokcek made headlines last week when he asked residents to take longer vacations and suggested schools reopen late to help curb water consumption.

Some Ankara residents support Gokcek's suggestion.

"I am going to my mother's place for the weekend. You should also leave Ankara immediately," the head of Turkey's agricultural chambers, Semsi Bayraktar, told reporters.
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Old August 9th, 2007, 09:06 PM   #7
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we have the same problem in cyprus ,we will introduce though mobile desalination plants.
of course in the case of turkey this must be done in a huge scale,but its a good temporary solution until it snows.
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Old August 10th, 2007, 11:28 AM   #8
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Mobile desalination plants? What does that look like? Would they have vans going around with pumps and pipes to filter the water?
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Old August 10th, 2007, 11:52 AM   #9
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i havent seen one myself
the first mobile desalination plant in cyprus will function in may 2008.
we already have two proper desalination plants functioning and one under construction
here are pics of mobile desalination plants found in the internet



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Old August 10th, 2007, 02:12 PM   #10
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Most Australian cities (except for those in the tropics) are in water restrictions.

Melbourne has been on restrictions for years now, and we are currently in Stage 3a restrictions with storages at 36.9%. Thanks to some decent rain during winter, we will most likely be spared from Stage 4 restrictions in summer.

Gardens can only be watered on two designated days per week (depends on your house number), between 6am and 8am if you're using a manual system (eg. hose, watering can) or 12am and 2am for automatic sprinkler systems.

The only parts of cars which can be washed using tap water are the mirrors, windows and lights and only one in four sports grounds can be watered.

It means that many households now collect their own water for watering gardens, commercial car washes are doing very well and some sports grounds/golf courses are trucking water in.


You can see that 2006 was a very bad year - there is typically a rise during the winter and spring months but last year it just went straight down.

Many people support permanent Stage 1 restrictions, which cover common sense stuff like not watering gardens in the middle of the day or sweeping rather than hosing down concrete surfaces.

Last edited by invincible; August 10th, 2007 at 02:19 PM.
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Old August 10th, 2007, 04:20 PM   #11
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Mayor of Ankara is a bloody moron!
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Old August 10th, 2007, 09:32 PM   #12
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How do they enforce the water restriction?

Particularly the car thing, they're only allowed to wash the mirrors and windows...
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Old August 11th, 2007, 10:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gladisimo View Post
How do they enforce the water restriction?

Particularly the car thing, they're only allowed to wash the mirrors and windows...
Satellite surveillance and water sampling conducted by a team of men in black vans


( I'm, guessing they rely on people calling the athorities if seeing others waste water - or maybe look at the gages to certain areas and compare with normal figues... )
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Old August 12th, 2007, 10:32 AM   #14
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Edmonton is apparently running out of an additive in our drinking water.

=============================================



Edmonton water supply short on fluoride

Bill Mah, edmontonjournal.com
Published: August 10, 2007 4:34 pm

Look ma, no fluoride!

The chemical that many municipalities add to water to prevent tooth decay is in such short supply that Edmonton could run out this fall if an expected shipment falls through.

"At this time we have sufficient fluoride to meet Edmonton's needs until the fall," said Mike Gibbs, spokesman for Epcor, which supplies water to the Edmonton region.

"But it is a situation that we're closely monitoring and actually what's happening is there's a shortage in North America of fluoride."

The company has its regular two-month supply in stock, enough to last to the end of September. It has ordered another shipment to last until December. But a reliable supply of fluoride is no longer a sure thing.

Municipalities in the U.S. and Canada are scrambling for fluoride, a byproduct of phosphate mining, which has soared in price and dwindled in availability in recent months.

In the United States, the shortage has been attributed to Hurricane Katrina damaging Gulf Coast manufacturing facilities two years ago, and to a downturn in the phosphate mining industry and the shutdowns of some American suppliers.

"We are monitoring it. We have enough for now but if we do run into a situation where we're not able to add fluoride to drinking water because of the shortage, we'll notify the public," Gibbs said.

"We'll have a better idea in the next month or two, whether we'll be in a situation."

U.S. cities as diverse as New Orleans, Portland, Maine and Greensboro, N.C. have reported shortages or temporarily suspended adding the compound to their water supplies.

Ottawa has also run short of fluoride for short periods this year and has seen prices for fluoride double to $566 per metric tonne this year from $285 per metric tonne in 2006.

Closer to home, Red Deer city officials told the Red Deer Advocate newspaper that the city's water went without fluoride for a period two weeks ago. The city is anticipating an extended shortage because of spotty deliveries.

In Edmonton, Epcor adds 0.8 parts of fluoride per one million parts of water. The city has treated its water with fluoride since 1967, after Edmontonians voted to do so in a plebiscite a year earlier.

Gibbs said the utility is protected from price spikes because it signed long-term contracts.

One option in case of a long-term local fluoride shortage may be to slightly reduce the level put in water until supplies recover, Gibbs said.

Fluorides protect tooth enamel against acids that cause cavities. According to Health Canada, many studies show fluoridated water greatly reduces the number of cavities in children's teeth. About 40 per cent of Canadians receive fluoridated water.

Kimberly Carriere, spokeswoman for the Alberta Dental Association, said going without fluoridated water for short periods isn't likely to harm dental health.

"For long periods, you'd certainly see an increase in dental caries but you do have fluoride in your toothpaste so the impact wouldn't be that large in the short term," Carriere said.

Capital Health has been watching for a fluoride shortage since it received an alert from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last month.

The health region also downplays the health impact of a temporary fluoride interruption.

"Since we have been using fluoride in the water for a long period of time, a temporary shortage - even for weeks - would not affect things too much," said Nelson Fok, associate director of environmental public health.

"If (a shortage) does happen, we would work with the dental association and so on and ask the public, especially children, to make sure they brush their teeth with fluoridated toothpaste and floss their teeth. All those things will help."
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Old August 12th, 2007, 04:57 PM   #15
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World Water Week to focus on climate change, biofuels

STOCKHOLM, Aug 11, 2007 (AFP) - Climate change and a potential water shortage in some regions, also due to the diversion of water to crops for biofuels, will be at the centre of the 2007 World Water Week which opens here Monday, with 2,500 international experts expected to attend.

The theme of the annual event's 17th edition will be "Progress and Prospects on Water: Striving for Sustainability in a Changing World."

Organiser Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) noted that water was playing a key role in global warming.

"It is through water people are impacted the most by climate change," SIWI spokesman David Trouba told AFP.

World Water Week will also discuss biofuels, destined to partially offset a coming oil shortage and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but which also need huge amounts of water.

"Where will the water to grow the food needed to feed a growing population come from if more and more water is diverted to crops for biofuels production?" asked Trouba.

The European Union wants biofuels to account for 10 percent of the total of motor fuels in 2020, against an estimated 1.6 percent last year.

There are two main kinds of biofuels: ethanols, sometimes called "biopetrol" and which are reserved for petrol-fueled engines; and biodiesels, used in diesel motors.

At the moment biodiesel is much more widely used than ethanol in Europe, in a proportion of 80 percent to 20 percent.

Ethanol is made from sugar beet, wheat, corn and sugar cane.

Biodiesels, known also by the scientific name EMHV (methylic ester of vegetable oil), or diester, are extracted from colza, sunflower, soya and palm oils, and mixed with diesel fuel.

Medical aspects of polluted water will also be tackled during World Water Week and widely lacking sanitary facilities in developing countries have prompted organisers to state, "Hurry up! 2.6 billion are queuing to use the toilet."

"The results are devastating: diarrhea resulting from poor sanitation and hygiene is responsible for the death of more than two million impoverished children each year," said SIWI.

And Trouba warned that "50 to 70 percent of the world's hospitals are full of people sick with easily preventable water-related diseases."

Bank and company investments in the water sector and water management between neighbouring states will also be broached during World Water Week.

The event will be opened by Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and close on August 18.
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Old August 13th, 2007, 04:31 AM   #16
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More cities should be located in the mountains or near them. Then itīll be easy to obtain fresh, crystal clear refreshing water. More cities should be situated like Vienna and Teheran!
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Old August 13th, 2007, 08:18 AM   #17
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when i was in the philippines for about a month, there were severe water shortages in metro manila due to a lack of rain
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Old August 13th, 2007, 08:34 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grotlaufen View Post
More cities should be located in the mountains or near them. Then itīll be easy to obtain fresh, crystal clear refreshing water. More cities should be situated like Vienna and Teheran!
Chongqing is like this,but we were flooded recently.This is the first time I see the flood since I was born.I think the weather is changing.
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Old August 14th, 2007, 09:55 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gladisimo View Post
How do they enforce the water restriction?

Particularly the car thing, they're only allowed to wash the mirrors and windows...
Most of it relies on trusting people to understand the lack of water (which isn't even that bad compared to other cities worldwide and domestically) and conserve, but there are extremely occasional patrols by employees of the water companies.

Most enforcement relies on neighbours and so on. There was a time when there was a stigma associated with having green grass when everyone else's was brown, but it's not as bad now that it actually rains and many people collect their own water.

People who disobey restrictions can have their water supply reduced to a trickle, so that there's just enough to cook with.
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Old August 14th, 2007, 10:04 AM   #20
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These types of water bans are more symbolic and rely on self-control. The objective is to get the message across. It's very easy to ignore it and continue with the daily routines, but hopefully blasting a water ban all over the media will make them think twice before they consider violating such a ban.
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