“You are the generation that must be prepared! You live in the midst of economic, political, and spiritual instability. When you see these signs, unmistakable evidences that His coming is nigh, be not troubled, but Stand in Holy Places and be not moved until the day of the Lord comes.” – President Ezra Taft Benson
Without water, life would cease to exist. Yet today, nearly one billion people, approximately 1 in 8, lack access to clean water. More than twice that many don’t have access to a toilet.
Hopefully, (wishful thinking) we will never find ourselves in a similar situation to some that I will talk about this week. I have decided to put together some information this week on the water crisis facing our world, in hopes to spur those of us who can prepare, to prepare……so that hopefully we will not find ourselves in a water crisis situation. Keep checking back for more updates as I find more info throughout the week or so. The updates will be here at www.todaywhilethesunshines.blogspot.com . I have also found some great school curriculum to help teach us about water and the water crisis in our world, at http://water.org/learn-about-the-water-crisis/lessonplan/ Check it out if you are looking for ideas to teach your kids, yourself, or great Family Home Evening lessons on the importance of water.
Then take the time to ACT in whatever ways you can…..whether preparing your family……or helping someone else. There are many charitable organizations out there that help to build wells in underdeveloping countries, and lots of opportunities like that, but even if we look around us, we will find that we have ample opportunities right in our own communities to help out.
A few water statistics (taken from water.org)
1. Without food a person can live for weeks, but without water you expect to live only a few days.
2. The daily requirement for sanitation, bathing, and cooking needs, as well as for assuring survival, is about 13.2 gallons per person.
3. More than 3.5 million people die each year from water-related disease; 85 percent are children, ages 0-14. 43% of the water related deaths in all ages, are due to diarrhea, which 90% of these are children under 5 years of age, mostly in developing countries . Nearly all deaths, 98 percent, occur in the developing world. Children in poor environments often carry 1000 parasitic worms in their bodies at any time. 1.4 million children die as a result of diarrhea each year.
4. 884 million people, lack access to safe water supplies. Approximately one in eight people. Lack of access to clean water and sanitation kills children at a rate equivalent of a jumbo jet crashing ever four hours. The water and sanitation crisis claims more lives through disease than any war claims through guns.
5. Lack of sanitation is the world’s biggest cause of infection. At any given time, half of the world’s hospital beds are occupied by patients suffering from a water related disease.
6. Millions of women and children spend several hours each day collecting water from distant, often polluted sources. This is time not spent working at an income-generating job, caring for family members, or attending school.
5. An American/Canadian taking a five-minute shower uses more water than the typical person living in a developing country slum uses in a whole day.
5. 443 million school days are lost each year due to water related illness.
http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1953379_1953494_1954584,00.html Post earthquake water crisis in Haiti. A good article that talks a small bit about the crisis that Haiti faces with water right now.
Water Storage And Purification Author Unknown
In Honduras 9,000 people died in the hurricane. In the 5 weeks following, 35,000 people died from bad water. A good water filter or chlorine to purify water can mean the difference in life or death. Without this, you only have a couple of days. Drinking “bad” water can be fatal and usually is fatal if the Medical system is down. Lack of water will kill in three days… and after 36 hours, your judgment is seriously impaired.
The Church has set guidelines to store one gallon/per person/per day for two weeks. This means you need to store 14 gallons for each member of your family. Folks, this is not enough water to meet the needs of most families in crisis. We use more water than that. The average person uses 72 gallons per day for all their needs including cooking, drinking, and cleaning.
You must also have the ability to purify water after your initial supply has been exhausted. This can be as simple as chlorine and a simple pool testing kit. This is inexpensive and very effective. Be sure to store your water supply in a cool dark area on pieces of wood (not directly on concrete or dirt) [see Issue #13]. Be sure to use the correct storage container. A good water container is airtight, breakage resistant (no glass), and is made of material that won’t rust or affect flavor. Bacteria growth will be discouraged if the container is both airtight and opaque, as bacteria needs both air and light to grow. Algae is green, but isn’t harmful, just unsightly.
Remember that water weighs approximately 8 lbs. per gallon. Do not store more than 15 gallons of water (about 125 lbs) in any container that is meant to be portable. Rotate water storage every year. The water does not go bad; it just gets flat and tastes bad. It can get green algae, and makes the water a “hard sell” to children and even some husbands. Green Kool-Aid will disguise it.
This storage is of course a band-aid on the big problem. After your storage is used up, you will need to replenish the supply. A good filter or chlorine to purify water can mean the difference in life or death.
Storage methods: 55 gallon plastic barrels are a great way to store water because they store the most water in the least space and require the least effort for rotation. You need a hose or siphon pump to get the water out, and these barrels are great to collect new water such as rainwater from your roof downspout. Use only brand new barrels. Used barrels will continue to leak out the product that was first put into those barrels.
Water purification methods: Clorox Bleach – Please do not use; unless you have nothing else! At best – it will cause diarrhea, vomiting, cramps, and on the worst side, bleeding ulcers. Your great, great grandmother might have had to use this product because it was all they had to make water pure, but this is not true today. The part of Clorox Bleach they sought was Chlorine. That is the part we want. But there are so many other ingredients in this product that hurt and do not heal.
Boiling – minimum of 10 minutes, and up to 20 minutes; so you must have stored a lot of fuel. It requires 20 minutes or more to kill giardia. Water tastes very flat after this kind of boiling. Very effective if done long enough. Needs a huge storage of fuel. Store flavoring for your water: tang, powder drink,etc.
Iodine – bad side effects such as thyroid storm in some women. It has a peculiar odor and taste that some people cannot tolerate. Never use for more than 72 hours at any one time. During a nuclear crisis, iodine may provide the added benefit of preventing the thyroid gland from radioactive disruption.
Purifiers – cost lots of money and are very slow. The filter should be a maximum size of .02 microns or it will be no good for giardia. A Porcelain type is used by the Red Cross to the Green Berets. This will take out types of Radiation (Alpha and Beta).
Chlorine – this is the way almost all cities do it – very cheap and it works – available at any spa & pool store. In the “Joint Chief of Staff Anti-Terrorism report of October 2002”, put out at the start of the war, February 2003; this is what they report works and is what they recommend. You must buy a measuring kit as well. It is very slow acting, so time is needed to allow it to work. It needs about 24 hours to work and repeated if there is no measurable free-floating chlorine. To remove the chlorine taste, cover loosely, and let stand for another 24 hours and the chlorine evaporates. Be sure to measure the chlorine before you allow it to evaporate. If there is no measurable chlorine, there may still be bacteria in the water. Store flavoring for your water: tang, powdered drink, powdered milk, Kool-Aid — Something!
Colloidal Silver – The Micro Silver Bullet of the past AND the future. History: In the milking industry they often use a silver milk pail on a warm day; the milk will not spoil quickly. Plagues in Europe: Wealthy families gave their children silver spoons to eat with and they did not catch the “Black Death”. Pioneers used to put silver dollars in canteens and water containers. Pioneers used to suck on silver dollars when they felt ill. Proven that it works with water purification, as well and against many diseases.