Edmonton Alberta Queen Elizabeth High school group 2.b

Environment   Nov 1, 2017 by Andrew Hui

How do we use water?- Jolene, Subha

We can use water in many ways, one such way is the consumption of water im drinking and the use of water in cooking to make food. Water is also used in the production of resources such as irrigation in farming, hydroelectric dams, the Pharmaceutical industry, and a variety of other industries. Water is also used in fracking as high pressured water is shot into the ground to extract resources. We also use water for sanitation purposes such as laundry, our personal hygiene and cleaning. Water is also used for transportation as boats, ships, and hydro power cars use bodies of water to move. Water is also used in our sewage systems to help the sewage flow into storage and treatment sites. Construction also uses water because we need water to activate cement and cement are used a lot in construction.

Where does our water come from? Sahaj, Andrew, Cielo

Water is about 71% of the earth's surface, which means that we have it all around us; since the water is so deep like glaciers, lakes, ponds etc, 97% is saltwater. Only 1% is drinkable. That means that we need to be careful and care for our water since there is, in fact, a limited amount that is drinkable. One of the human's basic needs is water, without it we would die. For us living in the city sometimes we think about water just coming from the taps we use the tap to draw water every day whether for washing our hands, dishes or for drinking. However, the process for where the people get their water in Edmonton is much more complex. For us, our main water source is the North Saskatchewan River which in turn gets its water from the glaciers in the Rocky Mountains

. The water from the North Saskatchewan River is treated at the Epcor EI smith water facility, and the Rosedale water treatment plant so can water can be drunk by us. At the facility Epcor uses coagulation, flocculation, chloramine and UV light for filtration. For Edmonton’s wastewater that is treated at Edmonton’s Gold bar wastewater plant treatment plant. At this plant the water goes through a different filtration process, The first part is the pretreatment as the wastewater is brought through Goldbar’s aerated grit tanks with heavy objects sinking to the bottom and the lighter objects are trapped by large bar screens at the end of the tanks. For the primary treatment of the wastewater it is sent to the primary water treatment clarifiers where up to 50% of the impurities in the water are removed, then we go to the secondary treatment where they use microorganisms such as fungi to clean the water, after the second treatment the biological nutrient removal happens where the modified bioreactors allow the organisms to remove ammonia and phosphates which can be harmful in high concentrations. The last steps for the wastewater treatment are the final clarification and the UV disinfection and now the wastewater is now treated and drinkable.

What about the water cycle?Julia, Israa, Ehelsan, Sabreen

From evaporation of water from rivers, lakes, and oceans to precipitation as rain, snow, or hail, the water cycle is a biological cycle in which water circulates in Earth’s ocean, land, and atmosphere. Because it’s a ‘cycle’, there is no start and end to this process, but it may have an end if water is not returned back to the cycle or contaminated. Contaminated water then could mix with chemicals in the air and create acid rain, which affects many organisms and people. This water cycle connects the land, the ocean and the atmosphere. The water that is on the land like runoff or groundwater, would be evaporated and then come down as precipitation, that would end up in all kinds of bodies of water like oceans, streams and rivers.

Water filter questions

  1. Discuss what your thought process was to create the create your filter.

While doing our filtration project, we were thankful that we are able to access to clean drinking water. Clean water is not something everyone in the world can access to despite it being a basic human right. We should decrease reckless usage and consumption of water as it is a limited resource. Filtrating habit makes our planet sustainable.

  1. What challenges did you overcome?

Some of the challenges that we overcame were that we were missing a few of our group members. Miss Buhlmann helped us by giving us some materials we need, like cotton balls, dirt, and coffee filters. By using these materials, we were able to finish our filtration projects. At the start of our project, we also struggled with which tutorial to use for our water filter as we looked at a few tutorials that we looked up online.

  1. Which techniques would you recommend to your colleagues? How can what you discovered in this process be applied to the industry?

We recommend filtration with dirt. Instead of dumping chemicals into rivers, industries can come up with their own filtration system so that they can reuse the clean water.

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For the first picture we used sand as the filter layer and in the second picture, we used sand as the filter layer.


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2 Comment(s)

Rebecca Jin
Nov 11, 2017

This is such an in-depth post! I like how your team came together and crafted this well thought out reflection. It's amazing how you guys have such a deep understanding of the water systems around you and the world. I also like how you guys included pictures for better understanding. I'm inspired to learn more about the water systems around me now!

I can't wait to see more from you guys

It would also be great if you can read my blog post and give me some feedback!

Sarah Flynn
Nov 5, 2017

Great post! Excellent synthesis of the team's thoughts!

In answering the first water filter question, you bring up Resolution 64/292, of the United Nations General Assembly, that explicitly recognized the human right to water. I wonder what your thoughts are on this article (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/thunder-bay/human-ri...) that discusses the lack of access to clean, drinkable water for First Nations populations in terms of a violation of Human Rights?

Keep up the great work! Look forward to hearing more from/about Edmonton!

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