wasted water

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by tracecom, Sep 13, 2015.

  1. tracecom

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    Apr 16, 2010
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    Here in West Tennessee there is no shortage of water, but there is a question that I have been pondering for quite some time.

    If I "waste" water, where does it go? Doesn't it ultimately wind up back in the aquifer where it came from? And if so, where is the waste?

    Is water ever actually wasted, as in destroyed? I don't think so, but maybe I am wrong. It seems to me that water never is wasted. Maybe water is sometimes moved from where it is needed to somewhere else, but the water still exists doesn't it? So what was wasted wasn't the water, but rather the energy it takes to put more water back to replace what was moved.

    Am I wrong?
     
  2. GopherT

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    Nov 23, 2012
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    I agree mostly. What is wasted is the effort (energy and materials) of purifying the water and pumping it to your waste point.

    As long as it goes back into the aquifer, all is good (other than energy and materials loss which is not much - note how much 100 cubic feet of water costs.

    Anyhow, I see "wasted" water as the millions of cubic meters of fresh water running into oceans each day and becoming undrinkable as it mixes with salt water.

    I think it is sad that the Columbia River dumps tons of water into the pacific every day and all could easily cure California's need for water. If the rains do not come to California soon, those people are headed where the water is or projects will be started to move water from where it is to where it isn't.
     
  3. Lestraveled

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    What you don't see is the evaporation off of the ocean that rains on the land. It is a cycle.

    The water and the particles that make us are ageless. Parts of the water you drank today have been drank by heroes and villains through out the ages.
     
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  4. tracecom

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    For a long time, I lived in a rural area, and had my own private well. I lived alone and all my waste water drained on my own eight acres. And yet, I was unable to find any toilets and shower heads other than water saver models. My elderly uncle, who also owned his own well, was convinced to put bricks in his toilet tank in order to "save" water. I never understood it.

    It's kind of like the current portable gasoline containers that are "leak proof," in order to reduce contamination, but are so hard to use that fuel is spilled in the process. Or the laws against selling replacement caps for the older spouts on gas containers. Ostensibly that forces owners of old spouts to buy new containers when they lose the cap for their old container. Of course, the reality is that most just do without a cap.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
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  5. #12

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    This sounds almost philosophical.

    Start with the basics. This planet has a water cycle: sun, evaporation, rain. The best part about rain is that it is not salt water. Nature distilled it! Rain water can do a lot of things before it gets back to the ocean. From one point of view, the Mississippi river is a huge waste of water because a lot of it runs into the Gulf of Mexico. Another point of view considers human intervention. As soon as a human dams up, pumps, or pipes water, that effort can be wasted. If it comes out of your garden hose, you can theoretically waste the water.

    Then there is the scarcity angle. If the well on my farm can only provide 60 gallons a day, trying to water the corn field looks wasteful compared to having water for drinking, cooking, and bathing. Sixty years ago, every bucket of water had to be carried up a long hill by a person. Kicking over one bucket of water seemed like a waste because it wasted the time and energy of the person who carried it up the hill.

    It might seem difficult to waste water in Tennessee. It will probably go right back to one of the rivers. But how did it get to your house? If you had to carry one bucket at a time, you would think differently.
     
  6. nsaspook

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    No, California can not have 'our' water until they stop wasting billions of gallons by dumping waste water into the ocean instead of recycling it.

    The peak river level is getting pretty low here too, we might have to turn off the electric power to LA if Ca wants the water too.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.utilitydive.com/news/us-...a-rivers-generation-energy-storage-va/280586/
     
  7. #12

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    California eats 2/3 of the output of Boulder Dam but I couldn't find out how much you send as easily.
     
  8. strantor

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    I could use your question as an analogy that few people would agree with.

    Is it really possible to pollute the earth?

    Unless you are are bringing in foreign contaminants from somewhere off-planet, you aren't really introducing harmful elements that weren't already here.

    Maybe chemicals are moved from where they should have stayed, to somewhere else, but the chemicals always existed didn't they?
     
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  9. djsfantasi

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    Apr 11, 2010
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    Yes, but not in the form that we manufacture the chemicals into. Take plastics. They take years to break down. Or petroleum products. We take it out from deep beneath the earth. Sometimes it gets dumped into a water supply. Or chemicals used in manufacturing which get illegally dumped and cause illness (Love Canal)... As you say, the chemicals always existed, but sometimes not in a deadly form. Or someplace where they were not dangerous.
     
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  10. Kermit2

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    In the case of nuclear reactors (fukushima) there are elements that are dangerous to the environment and which were not originally present on earth.
     
  11. joeyd999

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    Actually, to be perfectly technically accurate, they were originally present on earth, but have since transmuted into other isotopes/elements.
     
  12. nsaspook

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    Only 3220 MW on the Pacific Intertie. The main feed dam for that line is here. http://www.cbr.washington.edu/hydro/thedalles
     
  13. atferrari

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    Pretty much in line with what GopherT said somewhere before. Is man who converted natural elements in something else becoming harmful.

    I have confidence in the capability of Nature to process "harmful" or no natural materials but that does not mean that humans will not suffer during the process and better not to rely on it, just in case.

    After seeing oil spills of any kind on different places at sea and rivers I would like to see us being more prudent.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
  14. joeyd999

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    With "us", of course, being the U.S. EPA.
     
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  15. JoeJester

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    To correct the "errors" of humanity, humans will need to devolve back to the simpler days of sticks as weapons and fire for warmth.

     
  16. joeyd999

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    And those who refuse to 'devolve' must die.
     
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  17. JoeJester

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    That would eliminate the "population" problem as well.
     
  18. Kermit2

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    Let the "purge" begin. Only if I am deciding who gets purged of course
     
  19. atferrari

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    Sorry to hear that but some 30 minutes ago, my assistant got you in the list and "purgers" are on their way to get you.:(

    Maybe, next time...
     
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  20. JoeJester

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    And the thread just got political, funny how that happens when dealing with humans.

    The infamous "they" will form an international committee to select those to terminate. "They" will vote on the final listing, so get your contributions ready. :)
     
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