From space, Earth is known as the blue planet, Mars as the red planet, Jupiter and Saturn are just gas giants made up of mainly hydrogen and helium.
It is this blueness that makes Earth support life as we know it, and the reason why all the other solar planets and beyond that we currently know of do not support life. Earth’s blueness comes from water, ocean water to be precise that makes up 75% of the planet’s surface.
However, as far as humans and just about every other land dwelling flora and fauna, the ocean water is too salty to sustain our ‘hydro-needs’. We need fresh water that we mainly obtain from freshwater lakes, rivers, springs, ground water and rain water.
The problem is, over the years, human population has increased exponentially. At the same time, we have created artificial demand for water; much the fresh water is being diverted to irrigate huge chunks of land under agriculture and for use in industrial plants as a solvent. Not to mention the carelessness of industrial plants dumping raw waste into fresh water resources making them unsuitable for human, animals and plants use.
Fresh water is increasingly becoming a very rare commodity, not only because of its growing demand but also due to the increasing dumping of household and industrial waste into fresh water sources.
World Health Organization, “783 million people do not have access to clean water worldwide.”
There is one innovative Tanzanian, who has come up with a simple invention that can make dirty contaminated water pure and clean enough for human consumption. This water filter promises far and wide application especially in a low-income neighborhood in third world countries, which more often than not lack access to clean water.
As clean drinking water is becoming a privilege to those that can afford to purchase the increasingly growing scarce commodity. The chemical engineer Askwar Hilonga’s innovation is a low-cost water Nanofilter using nanotechnology and sand to purify dirty and/or polluted water.
The sand is mixed with good bacteria that filter out the biological contaminants in the water like bacteria and viruses. While the nano materials filter and remove chemical contaminants including copper, fluoride and other heavy metals.
Hilonga’s is currently marketing his Nanofilter to folks in his home district of Karatu in Arusha, and stakeholders already see its potential for widespread use.