Fundraising | Warka Water - Every Drop Counts

When Architecture & Design is mixing aestheticism and natural ressources, magic happens.

Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.

I came across this fundraising on Facebook. Imagine producing from 50 L to 100 L of water very day just through the humidity in the air. The Warka tower would just do this and it costs $1,000 per tower that are produced in Ethiopia where only 44% of the population has access to potable water. The project team express also various prototypes around the Warka Towers like providing solar panels for LED lights so children can read and do homeworks at night. 

The Warka Water project began in 2012 by the Italian design firm ‘Architecture and Vision,’ directed by Arturo Vittori, and with the support of external collaborators. 

Manufacturing the Warka tower locally and sourcing indigenous materials can create jobs and boost the local economy. Women and children can engage in productive activities such as care, education and crafts that can lead to self-sufficiency. 

What is the tower made of and how big is it? 

  • Materials: Bamboo, hemp, metal pins, bio-plastic
  • Dimensions: Height 19 ft (5.8 m) – Footprint Ø 18 ft (5.7 m)

Warka Water is an environmentally, socially and financially sustainable solution to potable water. 

Read more about this project and donate: https://www.generosity.com/emergencies-fundraising/warka-water-every-drop-counts--2

www.facebook.com/WarkaWater

 

Visiting small isolated communities up on high plateau in the North East region of Ethiopia, we witnessed this dramatic reality: the lack of potable water. The villagers live in a beautiful natural environment but often without running water, electricity, a toilet or a shower. To survive here, women and children walk everyday for miles towards shallow and unprotected ponds, where the water is often contaminated with human and animal waste, parasites, and diseases. They collect the water using dry carved pumpkins and carry the water back in old plastic containers, which are extremely heavy.

The root cause of Ethiopia’s major health problems is the spread of diseases perpetuated by the lack of clean water and sanitation systems. Only 44% of the general population has access to safe drinking water, and merely 34% in rural areas (WHO/UNICEF March 2012). Water quality is severely poor and often contaminated by human and animal waste. The impact of poor water quality on the health of communities is shocking – approximately 54,000 children die each year directly from diarrheal diseases and 217,000 more die from related illnesses, such as malnutrition, pneumonia and malaria (UNICEF February 2012).
 

To help improve this dramatic situation, we made it our mission to find a solution and help people with Warka Water: an environmentally, socially and financially sustainable solution to potable water.

 

Air always contains a certain amount of water, irrespective of local ambient temperatures and humidity conditions. This makes it possible to produce water from air almost anywhere in the world. Locations with high rates of aerosol and humidity are best to install a Warka Water tower, which is designed to harvest potable water from the atmosphere (it collects rain, harvests fog and dew). Our objective is to provide up to 26.4 gal (100 L) of drinking water every day.

 

Below are the key details of Warka Water 5.0:

  • Daily water supply: 13 to 26 gallons (50 to 100 L), annual average 
  • Water tank storage: 264 gallons (1000 L)
  • Construction: 4 days, 6 people (by hand, no electrical power machinery required)
  • Assembly: 3 hours, 4 people

  • Weight: 132 pounds (60 kg)
  • Materials: Bamboo, hemp, metal pins, bio-plastic
  • Dimensions: Height 19 ft (5.8 m) – Footprint Ø 18 ft (5.7 m)
  • Surface Area: Mesh 690 sq. ft (64 sq. m), Collector 205 sq. ft (19 sq. m), Canopy 1288 sq. ft (120 sq. m)
  • Cost: ~ $1,000 (production in Ethiopia)
  • Maintenance: easy to be maintained, cleaned and repaired.

 Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.

Warka Water is first and foremost and architectural project and should not be considered as the solution to all water problems in developing countries, but rather as a tool that can provide clean water in selected areas, particularly in mountainous regions where conventional pipelines will never reach and where water is not available from wells. These remote communities, often with limited financial means, struggle to find reliable sources of clean water for the people and animals and for agriculture.

 

Warka Water is designed to be owned and operated by the villagers, a key factor that helps guarantee the success of this project. Warka Water not only provides a fundamental resource for life – water – but also creates a social place for the community, where people can gather under the shade of its canopy for education and public meetings.

Warka Water is inspired by nature and lost ancient traditions. Many plants and animals have developed singular ‘skills’ to enable them to collect water from the air and survive in the most hostile environments on Earth. Some key examples include the Namib beetle’s shell, lotus flower leaves, spider webs, and the fog collection and water storage system in cacti. We have identified and continue to improve upon specific materials and coatings that can enhance dew condensation, water flow, and storage capabilities.

The construction techniques are inspired by local vernacular architecture and uses local and biodegradable materials to design a structure that both complements the natural landscape and can be built easily by hand with the collaboration of villagers. Furthermore, Warka Water uses very little materials for environmental sustainability.

 

 

Adopting the Warka Water for small rural community can lead to numerous impactful initiatives:

  • Education: Women and children can engage in productive activities such as care, education and crafts that can lead to self-sufficiency
  • Economy: Manufacturing the Warka tower locally and sourcing indigenous materials can create jobs and boost the local economy
  • Society: The Warka tower’s canopy creates a gathering place for the community
  • Agriculture: Water produced by the Warka tower can be used for irrigation and farming
  • Environment: The water management training program can introduce the principles of permaculture.

Warka Water 5.0: Every Drop Counts from Architecture and Vision on Vimeo.

Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.Warka Water is an experimental project designed to offer an alternative water source for rural communities facing challenges in accessing drinkable water.

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