Water should not be a luxury product, but still in these modern times, one out of nine people does not have access to clean drinking water. The main issue here is that only around 4% percent of Earth’s water sources are rivers, lakes and drinkable water, the rest is comprised of oceans with salty water. These are all alarming statistics, but luckily in many such places around the world things are starting to improve thanks to new technologies.
One of the most active NGOs that are trying to fight for access to clean water is called Give Power and their main mission is to install solar power technology that can help the communities dealing with this issue. Their most recent success story is related to Kenya and the village named Kiunga, where they managed to install a solar-powered desalination system. This system transforms ocean water into drinkable water and can produce enough water for 35 000 people per day (around 70 thousand liters). Before Give Power, the inhabitants of Kiunga had to travel one hour each day to reach a water source, but it was one used also by animals and full of parasites. Such improvements, like Give Power’s initiative, are constantly needed as according to the World Health Organization, there are still 2.2 billion people around the world who do not have access to drinking water and 4.2 billion can’t access safely managed sanitation services. These things can lead to more issues like the spreading of diseases and dehydration in very hot and rural areas. So how does the process of desalination work exactly? It is a process in which salt and minerals are separated from the water through a membrane. But because liquid goes through an osmotic process in which its natural state is to have equal amounts of water, minerals, and salt on each side of the membrane, a lot of energy is required to stabilize it. Also, post-processing requires a lot of chemicals to be added to the water for the desalination to happen. But Give Power, managed to find a solution to all this through their solar water farms, using solar panels, Tesla batteries, and water pumps. The other plus side of this technology is that the final product does not produce saline residues which pollute the environment.