Home | TheWaterBlog

TheWaterBlog: If you want to share unique images and observations in this section, or would like to know about syndicating these posts, send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

 

Elixir

By Letty Fajardo Vera and Frank van Steenbergen, May 2018

Early in the morning delicate bitter orange blossom is harvested, carefully by hand. The fragrance in the blossom at daybreak is most poignant, the dust and heat of the day have not yet worn it away.  The same day the blossom is steamed in simple distillation installations. The vapour is cooled and collected. And so, as simple as that in every Tunisian family elixir is made.

The preparation of orange water or other elixirs is done all over Northern Tunisia with different areas having different flowers to offer: jasmine, geranium or pelargonium.

It is wellbeing contained in a bottle.  Essence carried by drops of water. The delicate power of the blossom transferred to water.

 Every house in Tunisia keeps a small stock of bottles. The elixirs are always at hand to improve life. They have what it takes to reduce ailments: cough, heart problems, rheuma, diabetes. They make food more tasty; from couscous to coffee. They make the atmosphere smell better.

      

House hold elixir in a Tunisian House

Simple household distillation

 

  • Hydraulic World Wonders: the Aghlabid Pools

    Hydraulic World Wonders: The Aghlabid PoolsBy Frank van Steenbergen, May, 2018 Picture from the Aghlabid Pools and small intake pond .Postcard from Kairouan, Tunisia - from the Aghlabid Pools, among the world wonders of hydraulic engineering. The pools were built in the 9th century under orders of Prince Abu Ibrahim Ahmad of the relatively short-lived but powerful Aghlabid Dynasty (800 to 909). T...

    Read more

  • Fodder production with road water harvesting in African drylands

    Fodder production with road water harvesting in African drylandsPosted by Kevin Mganga May 22/05/2018Drylands provide a vital livelihood stream to people across the globe through a range of goods, products and ecosystems services. These arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs) are characteristically very fragile and are facing increased land use and land use change pressure compounded by high climate va...

    Read more

  • Ingenuity: ancient water harvesting in the Altiplano of Bolivia

    Ingenuity: ancient water harvesting in the Altiplano of BoliviaPosted by Francesco Sambalino and Martha AgujetasMay 22/05/2018Water scarcity is not new to many people and for many it is way of life and survival. Here is an example: the inhabitants of the Bolivian altiplano who have lived and thrived despite this struggle for millennia. The altiplano consists of a high plateau located between 3.650...

    Read more

  • The Tube recharge system

    The Tube recharge systemOur Earth has no scarcity of water and hence the name “the blue planet”. But ironically less than 3% of all water on earth is fresh water and even less is readily available for use. A big chunk of the “usable” fresh water, about 30%, is stored in the belly of the earth as groundwater. Figure 2 shows the amount of groundwater in comparison with surface fresh water in...

    Read more

  • Tackling Dust

    Tackling DustPosted by Frank van Steenbergen and Marta AgujetasMarch 09/03/2018Planting trees, shrubs and grasses along the road is an often-overlooked option to create a productive asset and alleviate the negative effects of roads on the local environment. Negative effects include erosion, loss of fertile soils, gully formation that undermine road foundations, heavy dust, and more.Dust lifted by ...

    Read more

  • Using hydrological modelling to improve drainage in Polder 26, Bangladesh

    Using hydrological modelling to improve drainage in Polder 26, BangladeshPosted by Flavia Simona Cosoveanu, Anisul Haque, and Marta Agujetas PerezMarch 30, 2018Internal roads in polders change the natural drainage patterns and direction of flow in waterways. Roads determine the water distribution and availability inside polders, and can also lead to water logging.A culvert is needed hereField surv...

    Read more

  • We have a deal for you…

    We have a deal for you...Posted by Frank van SteenbergenMarch 23, 2018We have a deal for you. The deal is to invest on a large scale in the capture of rainfall: to collect rainfall, run-off and floods: to retain these, store these and to use this water when required. There is by now good evidence that where this is being done, the resource base convincingly changes for the better. Rather than let...

    Read more

  • The potential of Roadwater Harvesting: A Malawian Demonstration

    The potential of Roadwater Harvesting: A Malawian DemonstrationPosted by Macpherson Nthara and Abraham AbhishekMarch 21, 2018Farmers examining the roadside pitsIn January 2018, a group of farmers in Malawi's central Lilongwe district visited sites where water harvesting pits had been dug along rural roads. The pits caught rainwater and runoff, enabled it to percolate, recharge groundwater, and imp...

    Read more

  • Igunga ecovillage: a success story from the water scarcity trenches

    Igunga ecovillage: a success story from the water scarcity trenchesPosted by Eduardo Tovar LópezMarch 20, 2018Igunga is one of the driest districts in Tanzania. Water is very scarce and rainfall is more irregular and unexpected than before. Livestock is abundant and deforestation and desertification seem to be two hungry beasts devouring entire ecosystems.Complex issues such as climate change br...

    Read more

  • Food Miles

    Food Miles Posted by Mekdelawit Messay Deribe December 18,2017Food Miles. Does it ring any bells? If yes, great! If not let’s explore it together. Food miles is the distance your food has to travel from the farm to reach your plate. But why should we care how far our food travelled? Because the further your food travels- the more greenhouse gas(GHG) emissions it will produce. Now you might be sa...

    Read more