Category Archives: Water Saving

African Green Revolution, Water Saving Schemes and Toilet Problems

A genuine platform of a dynamic and doable economic progress and development advocates for a sustainable project such as a Green Revolution. In a simpler context, it entails an extensive and encompassing set of research development alongside technology transfer initiatives which had historically transpired between the early years of 1930’s and 1960’s. The very core of a functional Green Revolution is to increase agricultural productions anywhere in the world.

Father of Green Revolution

Historically, Norman Borlaug is cited as the “Father of Green Revolution.” As a result, he was bestowed a Nobel Peace Prize during the circa of 1970’s because he was able to save millions of lives from the ill-effects of starvation due to the scientific know-how of yielding a wide variety of cereal grains, irrigation infrastructure, modernization of management techniques and the distribution of fertilizers which are compositely made from synthetic components and hybridized seeds, above anything else.

African Green Revolution

Due to its prolific and long term effects on food production, Africa has uniquely coined their very own version. This is dubbed as the African Green Revolution.

This revolution was not an easy undertaking for this persevering Third World country because of climate and soil issues, inadequate infrastructure, the absence of network firms that will sell commercialized grains to farmers and the likes. But, everything is possible with FAITH. God moved in many mysterious ways. The sudden and historic emergence of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa has paved the way for the life changing green revolution project for a once famine stricken nation.

Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa

Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa is an organization that specifically deals with all the agricultural products in the country. It was funded by Microsoft’s founder Bill Gates and his wife Melinda. This was courtesy of their widely-renowned Rockefeller Foundation. The main objective of this alliance is to improve the production of agricultural products and to provide endless support to local farmers and its accompanying labor force.

Goals

AGRA has enumerated the following goals to prove that the African government is really dead serious about improving its people’s quality and state of living: These are the following:

  1. Increasing the income of 20 million farmers
  2. Dramatic reduction of starvation by 50 percent in 20 countries
  3. The gradual development of a sustainable and climate friendly agriculture

Projects

AGRA has several projects to better exemplify the positive outcomes of Green Revolution. Some of these are as follows:

  • The development of disease-resistant strains of cassava; these genetically made cassavas are especially made to immune a cassava brown streak virus.
  • PhD programs in several universities in Ghana and South Africa

Water Saving Methods in Africa

In South Africa, the Water Conservation and Demand Management possesses several potentials to keep up with versatile ways in saving water through a serious campaign using public education as its method though it had a slim effect in the agricultural sector for some reasons. For several years, there were also micro jet and drip irrigation.  However, these mechanisms were only applied to less than 10 percent of an irrigated farmland. Meanwhile, a leading car company in the same territory that is widely-recognized as Avis, had advocated for the recycling of water. In turn, this will be used for buildings. For homeowners, they are advised by authorities to opt for water recycling technologies.

Going back, Avis had invested 1.9 million in 2008 using the local currency. The said water saving investment paid off after it was able to save an approximate of 4.2 million litres. As an integral part of their water conservation scheme, the firm is into reprocessing procedures of grey water from washing machines and baths.  Afterwards, this will be utilized wisely to wash 20,000 cars. On the other hand, potable water is used by their public employees.

Lastly, the harvest of rainwater is also one of the best ways in water conservation for South Africans. Some people had pioneered the greening of major buildings.  Additionally, Retailer Woolworth has innovatively built a grey water reclamation system. In essence, this water conservation scheme was able to remarkably irrigate the country for 10 months within a year without the aid of potable water.

Toilet Problem in Africa: A Never Ending Health and Sanitation Dilemma

The endless saga of Africa’s toilet problem is still prevalent according to a research study by Water raid and its comprehensive report which was released on the 19th day of November, in celebration of the World Toilet Day.

Along this line, it was significantly found out that almost 70% of people in sub-Saharan Africa do not have any toilet accessibility; although there had been several investments made in this respect.

Over the years, several presidents in Africa had bitterly failed to prioritize the paramount importance of sanitation. Consequently, citizens continue to defecate in open areas or they are resorting to use pails to answer the “call of nature.”  Hence, the prevalence of bacteria-related illnesses are inevitable. Significantly, it was found out that for every gram of fecal matter carries 1 million bacteria and 10 million viruses.

To a large extent, the vicious toilet problem in Africa holds back the labor force of this struggling country. Thus, their annual global economic growth had gravely slumped due to these sanitation deficiencies which terribly pushed this country to the limits.

Immediate Solutions

One of the best solutions to this toilet problem in Africa entails deep involvement of both public and private partnerships and the investments of large corporations. Similarly, community-based alliances and non-government organizations are doing their share to finally resolve this issue in the next few years. For instance, Ghana has a team which calls itself as Clean Team Ghana that provides the installation of affordable in-house toilets to urban and low-income communities.

Likewise, there are toilets that do not require any water at all.  Instead, these make use of a chemical to mask the foul odor.  Users have to pay a small amount of 10 cedi which is equivalent to $2.50. Three times week, a waste collector exchanges a used canister for a new and clean one. Wastes are then taken to a processing site where a filthy canister is being washed and sterilized. Generally, the overall cost of this toilet sanitation project is estimated at 35 cedi a month on a per toilet basis.