On Water Problems, Governments Actually Work Together

photo: wildlife is affected by algal blooms. On Water Problems, Governments Actually Work Together

Photo: Algae blooms are a frequent problem in Lake Erie. (AP)

When it comes to dirty lakes and rivers, governments have learned how to cooperate.

The greatest lubricant for intergovernmental harmony may well be water. I know that sounds odd, but the nation’s largest bays and lakes offer compelling examples of how multiple states can work with each other — and also with towns and cities, federal agencies, universities, nonprofits, … [more…]

Why the world needs to get smarter about water consumption

Why the world needs to get smarter about water consumption

The watery oasis of Ubari in the deserts of Libya. Sfivat/Wikipedia (public domain)

In 1900, just 15% of the world’s population lived in cities. Now that proportion is over 50%, which is a lot of people. In fact, it means around 4 billion human beings rely on urban infrastructure to keep them warm, mobile and clean. Technology helps with this of course. Digital sensors, smart phones and smart home appliances

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She Saved a River. And a City.

photo: Fez, Morocco river before entering the city, and after.

The Fez River winds through the medina of Fez, Morocco — a maze-like medieval city that’s a World Heritage site. Once considered the “soul” of this celebrated city, the river succumbed to sewage and pollution, and in the 1950s was covered over bit by bit until nothing remained. TED Fellow Aziza Chaouni recounts her 20-year effort to restore this river to its former glory, and to transform her city in … [more…]