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my duty, Misha.
That's what Healey for water is Life without water, we die.
We all know this.
And for this reason, the global narrative on how to tackle water scarcity has been intensely focused on ensuring that everyone has just enough safe drinking water to quench their personal thirst and survive.
But this surely is not enough.
What kind of existence is there when all you have is just enough water to survive?
Water impacts everything, and it is a few requisite for social stability.
When water is scarce, it constrains economic growth and exacerbates key global security concerns such as diseases, conflict and food production.
This is the reason that NGOs have spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to increase water availability across rural communities.
One lonely well at a time.
But it isn't working.
In sub Saharan Africa, for example, 50% off all wells failed within 2 to 3 years of being installed, leaving communities right back at square one.
I know something about this.
I grew up in the Caribbean on an island where water scarcity was an everyday reality.
Since then, though, I've spent an entire career studying and working on water.
I've worked with the U.
S.
Private sector and on behalf of the federal government.
Now that I'm based in Kenya, I face a whole new set of challenges around water that have become my life's work because I care about the progressive development of communities and water is foundational to making this happen.
What people always seem to get wrong is that there's not a lack of water in Africa.
In fact, the supplies are plenty.
This is exactly what Nigerian attributes legend fail.
A cootie was lamenting more than 30 years ago.
He sang There's water underground water over ground water in the air.
But look to your left.
Look to your right.
You can't see any.
The Congo region alone has as much water as the United States.
All of Africa has more than a trillion cubic meters of underground water.
More than 100 million acres of arable land holds on to some of this water.
So if there is so much water, why are so many living these water constrained lives?
I believe that the root cause for all of this has been the absence of a compelling alternative vision for how to ensure water availability No one has sketched this, not local leaders and not the NGOs.
Water prevision is serious business, yet everyone thinks that they can drill a well and solve water problems.
This has trivialized what it takes to keep water infrastructure up and running.
Justice has trivialized what the role is for water as an enabler for social stability.
But this is about to change.
We do know that given data technology and expertise, if creatively adapted to fit the context, that we can open up a whole new world of possibilities.
I lead a team of research scientists in Kenya who seek to inspire a new generation across sub Saharan Africa with the dream of ensuring free flowing water across their communities.
On we think we can use data to make this happen.
If want a provisioned becomes more about service delivery for food production, public health, commerce, investments and overall community stability and growth.
Instead of merely being about the installation of pipes and pumps, what new dreams and ideas could be inspire what new global water solutions might refined.
So we've started to drive this revolution by building what we call digital aquifers.
Ah connected ecosystem of things and humans that runs on groundwater but lives in the cloud.
So I'll just give you background on the basics.
This aquifer idea that we're talking about.
It's essentially an underground water storage tank.
Think of it like a bank.
Residents of a community with groundwater, our account holders.
The account can get overdrawn if it is not clear how much each person is allowed and how much they're going to need in the future.
So to properly manage the account, we need to know it all times how much water we have, how much is being pulled out and how much is being put back in.
So this digital aqua for them that we're talking about is essentially the physical aquifer that is instrumented and quantified.
So we have sensors linked to wells, intermittent mobile data from humans, whether data and a treasure trove of paper records that we use to build these digital aquifers.
We re create the physical aquifer on the cloud building models that tell us how fast what is being pulled out and house fast.
It's being pulled back, put back in as new wells and bore holes are added.
Revised estimates of water levels and what availability are developed.
So what we get is new data that can fundamentally change the global water conversation in Kenya.
Groundwater wells Already streaming information on water quantity This really time data helps us to understand when wells are about to fail so that we can marshal an army of water professionals who have the spare parts to fix the problem.
The point of all of this also is to understand where where new well should even be built in the first place, so that we can ensure that they are properly maintained and not subject to overuse.
This is how you stop focusing on quenching people's thirst and start ensuring that there's enough water to go around enough to ensure that individuals and communities thrive.
And this is only the start.
Think of the many business and financial transactions around water that we could now enable instead of only accounting for the physical totals and quality.
We could also think about the risks that are created by scarcity and provide insurance against these wrists on demand.
Imagine what this would mean for the millions of small scale farms around the world, especially the ones in sub Saharan Africa that a primarily rain fed new wells with water data would open up.
A whole new set of service is that would reduce the barriers to economic growth that water scarcity bills.
Banks would certainly feel better lending money to farmers who they knew had a reliable water supply.
All of this wanted data would also help water rich developing countries better negotiate with wealthy, wealthier external entities for looking to capitalize on the resource.
Remember, much of Africa was colonized because there was an untapped, unappreciated underground resource.
This time around, though, things should be different.
Resource looting cannot happen when people know in value what it is that they have now.
Africa is not the only place that will benefit from digital aquifers.
This is a global water solution.
In the Philippines, for example, digital aqua firs are being built to help the government increase its operational efficiency as it looks to ensure equitable water distributions for all Filipinos.
California could benefit from digital aquifers, reservoirs are running low, rivers are running dry, and the state of the ground water resource is unclear.
In the home of Silicon Valley, this is the last place on Earth that anyone would expect to be having debates about on equal water access and on even water distribution in the absence of reliable supporting data.
Yet here we are, So California.
Whenever you're ready, Africa has got a solution for you, Theo.
Stable social systems are built on water and driven by data.
There many places around the world where there's actually a physical lack of water and tough decisions are being made about where people should live and how much food should be grown because risky bets were made on water availability as populations increase.
And as the climate changes, global water challenges are only becoming more complex.
Luckily, though, we're in a time where we've got the data, the tools and the expertise to forge a new path forward that can ensure where water secure communities, Africa is leading the way.
And if we do this right, we all five.
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Easing water scarcity by understanding when and where it flows | Kala Fleming | TED Institute

3 Folder Collection
林宜悉 published on March 21, 2020
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