The 7 Best of 2007

Are you sick of all those best of 2007 stories? If not, I thought I would add fuel to the fire on the last day of 2007 with a WaterCrunch version. So here goes…

The Biggest Water Story
Hands down, the drought dreadnought of 2007 was the story. The graph below shows the amazing ascent in search volume for the word drought in the US. Interestingly, the volume was steady until 2007. The five states with the most searches include, in order: North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina.


The Best New Book
Mirage: Florida and the Vanishing Water of the Eastern U.S. by Cynthia Barnett. Like a fast flowing stream, this page turner is a compelling narrative that is part environmental history and part journalism. Read the Interview and buy the book.

Runner Up: The Blue Death: Disease, Disaster, and the Water We Drink by Dr. Robert Morris. Who would ever think drinking water epidemiology is exciting? Morris argues that we must do more to protect the water we drink as he explores mankind’s quest for drinking water in vivid and sometimes gory detail.

Most Talked About Report
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Reports. The IPCC was established to provide the decision-makers with an objective source of information about climate change. The IPCC does not conduct any research. Its role is to assess the latest scientific, technical and socio-economic literature to better understand the risk of human-induced climate change.

Runner Up: The Georgia State Water Plan. The development of this plan began after the 2002 drought. Three years in the making and its almost ready to fly out of the nest. The finished plan will be ready for the general assembly vote on the first day of the legislature session in January. Can the plan be implemented before the end of the current drought?

The Best Comment on this Blog
In response to my blog post “5 Ways to Save Water”, a blog reader responded with a hilarious comment “How about peeing into a bush outside? That might save a bit, too.” I need to work this into a blog post title.

Runner Up: The drought, Altanta and Lake Lanier were hot topics this fall. One my post “Lake Lanier has 81 days” a reader responded “Now as far as who owns the water, Buford Dam was built with federal money by the corps so there for the water belongs to the federal government and the Water Supply Act of 1958 gives solo control of the dam to the corps. However, if I end up drinking from my toilet or bathtub before this is over, someone’s head needs to roll. Not like
all 3 states haven’t seen this coming for decades.”

Best in Water Efficiency
Although the EPA’s WaterSense program is a little further behind than its energy equivalent, Energy Star, this program picked up some speed this year. The program mission is to protect the future of our nation’s water supply by promoting and enhancing the market for water-efficient products and services. There are now lists of approved toilets and bathroom fixtures. They are working next on a specification for shower heads.

Runner-Up: In July, I wrote a blog post that mentioned 19 of the 34 toilets on EPA’s WaterSense manufacturers list were manufactured by Caroma, an Australian company that first developed the first two button dual flush system (1.6 / 0.8 gallon). Before the New Year’s Resolutions feelings wear off, I vow to actually buy one of these toilets to test.

Best Drought Quote
“We’re not in any old drought. We’re in what I like to call the biblical drought. This is an enormous state of emergency.”

-Shannon Estenoz, a member of the South Florida Water Management District’s governing board

Runner-Up:“When the health, safety and welfare of more than 4 million people in Georgia are threatened by a lack of water, it is imperative that we take whatever steps are necessary to protect human life and the Georgia economy —- including temporary waiver of the Endangered Species Act”

– Georgia Rep. Sanford Bishop

The Best State Drought Related Website
On October 22, 2007 North Carolina requested that all community water systems reduce water use consumption and start weekly water use reporting. North Carolina has the most transparent online system for reporting water usage. Check out their Comprehensive Map or their check out the weekly reports.

5 Comments

  1. Re: The toilets. We bought a sterling rockton – on the list – it’s worked fairly well so far. Most of the time solids go down just fine with the .8gallon flush. It’s also a pretty simple looking mechanism.install oneseth – in durham, nc

  2. I love the Caroma dual flush toilets, the 4″ trapway was what stood out to me. I put my plunger in the basement and have not needed to get it out in the 6 months I have been using mine. We use the half flush on most flushes as well, really no need for the full flush.

  3. I distribute Caroma Dual Flush toilets and can’t say enough positive about them. I installed one im my house recently, it took me 30 mins and I love the toilet. We use the No.1 button even for solids and are amazed how well it performs. For more info on Caroma, please contact me at ecotransitions@earthlink.net. Best regards, Andrea Paulinelli

  4. I saw some of these Caroma dual flush toilets. If we are after consumption, this dual flush toilets is the most advisable answer.

  5. Dual flush toilets have been the norm in Australia for as long as I can remember – but even now they are becoming more and more water efficient.

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