Water waste continuing

Lessons still to be learned in the efficient use of water.


January was an odd month in Middle East. While residents were still digesting the photos of camels plodding through the snow in Saudi Arabia, the rains arrived in the UAE.

Record rainfall levels hit the streets of the Emirates' cities, with a reported 105mm landing on Dubai alone in just 24 hours. A week later pools of water can still be seen on the sides of some roads as it struggles to drain or dry in the unexpectedly chilly weather. But in the midst of this natural deluge of water, the flooding was being increased by a disturbing waste of mechanically-treated water.

Despite the rainfall, sprinklers were seen across towns spraying landscapes that were already soaked. This is bad enough in any country, but is surely even worse in a region where water is a precious resource and the majority of that needed is supplied by mechanically treating seawater or sewage effluent.

At a time where sustainability and environmental awareness is the hot topic both in the region and globally, those responsible for all water consumption must act to ensure that it is used efficiently. Replacing the standard timers on these systems with sensors is one solution; perhaps another is simply to switch off the flow when they are not needed.

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