Water Currents

Community Water Systems on the Rise

Caption: The Latin American Confederation of Water and Sanitation Community Organizations (CLOCSAS), recently celebrated eight years of protecting and strengthening community water systems that serve millions of urban and rural water drinkers. By Daniel Moss Water providers, essential to quenching our daily thirst, usually aren’t household names, their logo swooshed across a baseball cap. If…

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Of Dinosaur Pee and Aquifer Re-injection: Dilemmas in Water Reuse

By Daniel Moss

Thirsting for solutions to an exploding water crisis, there’s much talk about water reuse. At a recent conference of Mexican water distributors, two starkly different strategies were on display. In one scenario – causing some noses to wrinkle – consumers are asked to drink chemically-treated wastewater that has been re-injected into aquifers. In the other, they slake their thirst on water that’s been used, but generally only by ecosystems filtering water over time. Conjuring up prehistory, International Water Association Board Member Daniel Nolasco, described this re-used water as “dinosaur pee”….

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Community Water Systems on the Rise

Water providers, essential to quenching our daily thirst, usually aren’t household names, their logo swooshed across a baseball cap. If we think of them at all, it might be a big city utility. And yet, many urban neighborhoods, and vast stretches of rural areas, are served by tiny, often invisible community operators. In Latin America alone, over 145,000 small community operators serve 70,000,000 people. They are making good – or at least trying to – on the human right to water and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals….

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Cambodia: The Last Hope for Iconic Wildlife at the Brink?

The Mekong River is the 12th longest river in the world and the third most biodiverse river in terms of fish next to the Amazon and the Congo. It boasts the world’s largest inland fishery, providing food and livelihood for millions of people. It is a transboundary river that runs through six countries: China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, and supports hundreds of extraordinary species –- from birds to mammals, reptiles, and fish. It is also important habitat and the last remaining stronghold for species at the brink of extinction, including the giant freshwater stingray, giant ibis, Siamese crocodile, and the Mekong giant catfish. Since it is a transboundary river, there is a need for people to work together for the effective conservation and management of the river ecosystem.

As part of National Geographic’s Mentorship Program, I had the chance to participate in a Workshop on Saving Species on the Edge of Extinction, co-organized by my mentor, Dr. Zeb Hogan. The workshop was part of the USAID-funded Wonders of the Mekong project, a joint initiative that seeks to understand and share the value of the Mekong River ecosystem….

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A journey through Earth’s history by canoe part 2: Rivers keep flowing and life goes on

  From the beginning of life, rivers experiment, trying new directions and invariably taking the easiest path. Everything follows the line of least resistance, a river, a vein cutting through rock, animals crossing a hillside, people on their way to work. As we go in search of some of the earliest life, passing through layers…

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Journey through Earth’s history by canoe part 1: Hunting for early life in Arctic Canada

  It was early morning on the Coppermine River in Nunavut, Canada. A gentle mist rose from the surface of the glassy water, the sun’s first pink rays sparkling in the moving current. In the distance, the gurgling sound of faster flowing water was punctuated by birds waking in the trees, dragonflies chasing the buzz…

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WHAT THE RIVER KNOWS: Chaobai River, 潮白河, Beijing, China

Thanks for assistance from Dr. Fei Xue, University of Technology, Beijing, China; and Dr. Changwoo Ahn, George Mason University, and Principal Investigator for the panel, “EcoScience+Art: Interdisciplinary Collaboration Between Ecosystem Science and Art to Enhance Ecological Communication and Resilience,” at the International Association of Ecology, Beijing, China, 2017, funded by the National Science Foundation. Photos…

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A Displaced Spirit: The Uncertain Future of Africa’s Greatest River

By Chandra Brown “One day, every last drop of water which drains into the whole valley of the Nile…shall be equally and amicably divided among the river people, and the Nile itself…shall perish gloriously and never reach the sea.”– Winston Churchill, 1908 When the Bujagali dam was erected on Uganda’s White Nile in 2011, the…

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Researchers, conservationists, and others share stories, insights and ideas about Our Changing Planet, Wildlife & Wild Spaces, and The Human Journey. More than 50,000 comments have been added to 10,000 posts. Explore the list alongside to dive deeper into some of the most popular categories of the National Geographic Society’s conversation platform Voices.

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Voices director: David Braun (dbraun@ngs.org)

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