Friday, October 15, 2010

Blog Action Day 2010 Water

Blog Action Day is held annually on October 15 to unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day with the aim of sparking a global discussion and driving collective action. This year's topic is water.

According to the kind folkes at, currently almost a billion people on the planet don’t have access to clean, safe drinking water. That’s one in eight of us. Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of diseases and kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. The UN predicts that one tenth of the global disease burden can be prevented simply by improving water supply and sanitation.

I'm proud to use my blog to give a shout-out to the students and employees involved in Kettering University's chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB-USA), an organization devoted devoted to supporting the work of undergraduate, graduate, and professional engineers as they conduct development work in disadvantaged communities. Kettering's chapter (EWB-Kettering) was founded in 2006, and has members who are studying Mechanical, Electrical, Industrial, and Computer Engineering, as well as Biochemistry and Business. EWB-Kettering serves the Flint area and international development needs in villages in Africa and Mexico.

Locally, EWB-Kettering has designed and built playground equipment for 20 Flint elementary schools and wheelchair ramps for those who can't afford to do for themselves.

Internationally, EWB-Kettering has designed biosand water filters and SoDis (solar disinfection) units to clean and disinfect water for drinking. These systems (1) mechanically filter large parasites and bacteria, (2) “suffocate” smaller aerobic bacteria, (3) eliminate turbidity, and (4) sterilize the remaining bacteria and viruses with UV radiation. Select residents in the communities are trained on the use and maintenance of these systems. Kettering-EWB monitors the use of these systems in the village, and is exploring the possibility of delivering this technology to neighboring villages.

Visit the EWB-Kettering chapter for additional information, or to donate to this worthy cause thru the kind folkes at Network for Good!

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