Windhoek, Namibia

How Windhoek taps water from sewage

For obvious reasons, sewage is unappealing and drinking it, completely unfathomable. Yet, while most of the world is still debating if you should even try to treat household sewage to drinkable standards, Windhoek has been tapping water from it for decades. In 2018, Namibians marked the 50th anniversary of the first direct potable (drinking-quality standard) reuse plant in the world, …

Wastewater management in cities

Wastewater management – the blessing in the curse

Nowadays, cities seem to be the places to be for more and more people. For one, they can get access to better services, like water and sewage. In fact, the United Nations says that, between 1998 and 2008 alone, 1 052 million people accessed better drinking water in cities. A whopping 813 million accessed better sanitation, and the numbers are …

Gough Island by Tom ScSherry

Gough: The remote island that brings the weather close to home

Every October, a small crowd gathers at the East Pier Quay at Cape Town to welcome the SA Agulhas II home. On-board is a small group of people that just spent a year at one of the most remote places on Earth with a constant human presence. It’s called Gough Island. The Subantarctic and Antarctic are extreme regions both in …

Too little, too dirty, too much, at the wrong time and place: South Africa’s water crisis

South Africa’s ‘looming’ water crisis crashed onto international front pages that day when Cape Town announced it might run out of water. However, many would say a major catastrophe has been hiding in clear sight for decades. We are running out of water. Digging into the details, it’s clear the crisis hasn’t been looming for a long time already. South …

Copenhagen capital of Denmark

How this city gets the best tap water in the world

Hygge. It souns something like hoo-gha, and describes a feeling of cozy contentment by enjoying the simple things in life. It’s big here in Denmark, and I understand why. Simple things here are good; better than good even. Take the tap water as example. In Danish capital Copenhagen, the tap water is said to be the best in the world. …

The Limpopo River, where it runs through the Kruger National Park, forming a border with Zimbabwe.

A brutal drought in Kruger, a beautiful lesson from nature

It was a warm and sunny day, perfect for visitors to soak-up the world-renowned wildlife sightings of the Kruger National Park. But not everybody enjoyed what the wilderness put on display. It was a hippopotamus. She was stuck in the mud left behind in the wake of the river’s retreat. Too hot, she lay panting under the brutal sun. Too …