This past Monday was Earth Day, and this entire week is National Park Week -- a good time to think seriously about the natural world around us.
Water pollution causes problems in many areas of our lives, effecting our drinking supply, manufacturing processes, and irrigation methods. On almost every continent, polluted rivers, canals, aqueducts, and lakes are a growing concern. In addition to increased risks for disease, decaying vegetation, and harming regional animals, polluted source water also means clogged waterways that negatively impact our agricultural and industrial water systems.
An International Movement
The water pollution problem isn't just isolated to one country or continent; it's a global epidemic, effecting every corner of the Earth. Thankfully, several nations are leading the charge to find innovative ways to clean up the mess.
China has recently promised to spend $16 billion over the next three years to clean up the heavily polluted rivers. The Shanghai River provides water to 23 million residents, but has recently suffered from severe pollution, including thousands of dead animals infiltrating the waterways. In India, residents of Nagpur have joined forces to put an end to the Nag River pollution problem. Sewage and garbage has taken over the river making the water unusable, but a clean-up campaign has gained momentum, calling for the river’s clean up. And according to a new government report, the United States isn’t a stranger to river pollution, either. The study shows that more than half of the U.S.’s rivers can only be classified as “poor” due to pollution. Government agencies and environmentalists have used this week's Earth Day to vow action to save our waterways.
National Park Week Highlights River Pollution Problems
With this week being National Park Week in the United States, nature advocates are taking the opportunity to highlight our serious river pollution problem. They point out that a recent government study on U.S. rivers warns that our future water demands will mostly come from municipal and industrial needs, as the population continues to grow. That means the need for proper source water filtration will continue grow as well.
The Source Water Pollution Solution
Fortunately, there is an easy solution for cleaning water taken from these dirty rivers. A self-cleaning pump intake screen is a low maintenance solution that stops larger debris like fish, organics, and garbage from entering the water system. The entire screen rotates so that debris is pushed away, instead of clogging the screen, wasting time and energy. With large debris stopped before entering the water treatment system, there’s less wear and tear on pumps and finer filtration systems. With a pump intake screen, water is much easier to treat for irrigation, industrial processes, consumption, or other uses.
Download a FREE Pump Intake Screen Informational Brochure
A new and exclusive source water filtration brochure is available for the first time HERE. The informational sheet highlights all the benefits of pump intake screens, including full color drawings and pictures. Find out how these self-cleaning screens are the right choice to protect your water systems.
Filtration Puts the Freeze on Winter Crop Damage
Freezing temperatures have an impact on agricultural regions, causing damage to fruits and vegetable crops and forcing farmers to devise ways to protect their crops from frost damage. During these harsh winter months, many farmers turn to filtration to help protect their harvest. Using micro sprinkler systems, along with a proper filtration system, water can be sprinkled on to the produce, which then freezes, releasing heated energy onto the crops. The warmth from the liquid-to-solid-state transformation keeps the produce warm enough to avoid frost damage.In order for these micro sprinkler systems to work most effectively, filtration must be used to prevent the spray nozzles from clogging. Sand media filters are the perfect filtration solution for this situation, and for extra protection, a centrifugal sand separator can be installed before the sand media tanks in the water line to remove the larger dirt and solids before it reaches the tanks and other system parts.Irrigation Filtration Showcased at World Ag Expo Last WeekThe World Ag Exposition took place last week in the heart of the agriculturally rich Central California. The Expo --the world’s largest agriculture trade show -- prominently features irrigation and groundwater filtration solutions from around the globe.At the heart of this ag filtration show every year is the premiere brand in irrigation filtration: LAKOS Separators and Filtration Solutions. LAKOS sand media filters have been protecting irrigation systems, sprinklers, and drip emitters for decades. Their unique underdrain system provides an optimum, even flow, while providing longer operating cycles and the best backwash results in the industry.
New White Paper Explains The Importance of Irrigation Filtration
A new, recently published white paper explains in detail the importance of irrigation filtration and how to choose the right filter for each irrigation application. Written by an industry expert, this paper was presented at the annual Irrigation Association trade show and clearly illustrates the features and benefits of each option for irrigation and groundwater applications.
Available for the first time to the general public, CLICK HERE to download this resource of the Best Practices in the field of Irrigation Filtration.
East coast USA residents are still reeling from the intense damage caused by Hurricane Sandy; the violent storm that hit more than two weeks ago and left its devastating mark on the United States. As states like New York and New Jersey still recover from Sandy’s fury, water safety and useability has become a top priority.
Pumps and filtration systems come together in a key partnership during times of crisis to provide unique recovery solutions. Separators and filtration systems are used to remove solids and debris to help protect pumps and clean contaminated storm waters. Top officials and even President Obama have said that water filtration is a vital part of the recovery process.
“Our first priority is water filtration plants and some other critical infrastructure in the state,” said President Obama at a press conference in New Jersey, “And so we’re working with Governor Christie’s office and local officials to identify what are those critical infrastructure, and how we get what’s needed as quickly as possible.”
Filtration Protects Pumps and Cleans Well Water
Water safety is a concern for both municipal plants and residential well users alike during the post-storm clean up. Staff at some water treatment plants expressed concern about increased turbidity from agriculture land run-off during the storm.
Additionally, residential well owners affected by the storm are being urged by the EPA to check their water supplies for any contamination or possible pump damage:
“Swiftly moving flood water can carry large debris that could loosen well hardware, dislodge well construction materials or distort the casing. Coarse sediment in the flood waters could erode pump components. If the well is not tightly capped, sediment and flood water could enter the well and contaminate it.”
These contaminated flood waters, debris, and other unwanted solids can wreak havoc on a well system and potentially cause serious health problems as well as damage to pump impellers. Pumps are playing key roles during the Hurricane Sandy recovery, not just in wells, but in some unlikely places.
Pumps and Filtration Used To Restore New York Subways
City crews worked around the clock to pump hundreds of millions of gallons of water out of New York’s subway system. All but one tunnel of the famous transit system flooded during the storm, and these pumps are moving 16,500 gallons of water per minute to restore them. The spinning impellers inside the pumps push water up from the flooded subway and out through a discharge hose.
Before storm waters can be sent through the pumps, however, it has to go through a filtration process in order to protect the pump equipment. Filtration is key for extending pump life, protecting impellers, and enhancing pump performance in every application from city subways to rural wells.
LEARN MORE About Filtration For Dewatering and Source Water Problems
From pre-filtration screen filters to submersible pump separators and municipal filtration, there’s a filtration solution for almost any problem. When it comes to recovering from major natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy, flood water filtration plays a key role in recovery efforts.
Team Rubicon is a group of military veterans and medical professionals assisting in Hurricane Sandy's recovery, aiding with post disaster damage assessments, debris management, and flood recovery operations. CLICK HERE to donate to their relief efforts.
The fight over clean groundwater is becoming increasingly more intense around the world. Water supplies in some countries are reaching historic lows, while in the U.S., Nevada and Utah continue their legal battle over the Snake Valley groundwater pipeline project. The dispute could possibly end in the Supreme Court, bringing the concern of groundwater levels to the national stage.
Solving current water problems like groundwater scarcity and nitrates (see below) and preventing even more problems in the future is the challenge facing all of us, and much of our hope lies in the education of future generations. A growing number of colleges and universities have learning programs related to the study of water usage. The importance of developing new water technologies and more efficient methods for using water cannot be overstated, and that is why both LAKOS and Laval Underground Surveys annually award two scholarships to college-bound students looking to start a career in the groundwater industry.
2012 Ben Everson Scholarship Winners
This year’s winners of the $1,000 scholarships are each outstanding students, who both currently work in the water industry while continuing their education. Each plans to graduate and move on to a career to somehow cultivate safe water resources for years to come. You can view more information about the 2012 winners on the Ben Everson Scholarship website.
Students can apply now for the 2013 Ben Everson Scholarship. Visit BenEversonScholarship.com for elligibility requirements. The deadline to apply is July 1, 2013.
Solving Today’s Nitrate Problems: A New Case Study
Not only is water scarcity increasing, but the growing concern of nitrate levels in groundwater has been gaining attention. From Texas to Minnesota and California to New York, the health hazard has people worried about the levels of nitrates in the water. Nitrates occur naturally in the earth, or can be placed there by humans. Leaking sewage, fertilizers, and decomposition all can contribute to the problem. Effects of nitrate exposure to humans includes the often fatal “Blue Baby Syndrome” in infants.
One California city took action to lower the amount of Nitrates in their water. They installed a water treatment system to reduce the level of nitrates in the municipal well water. The only problem was that the new system required absolutely sand free well water. The city needed a reliable filtration solution to get the sand out of the well. They installed two LAKOS Centrifugal Separators, and the results have been astounding.
DOWNLOAD The FREE Case Study
Download the new Nitrate Filtration Case Study with full details and color photographs. See how the City of Jurupa successfully removed solids and nitrates from the city water supply thanks to filtration.
Every year the Irrigation Association promotes irrigation best practices by honoring July as Smart Irrigation Month. The goal of the month long celebration is to raise awareness of water efficiency.
Water conservation is more important than ever this year, with many agricultural regions suffering from severe drought conditions. In Nebraska, over 1,100 farmers have been ordered to stop irrigating their crops with surface water, due to extreme drought. They will have to rely on groundwater to prevent the corn crop from dying. With these conditions, it’s important for farmers to utilize best practices in irrigation to get the most out of their water and equipment.
Filtration: An Irrigation Best Practice
According to the Irrigation Association, the best practices that irrigation systems should incorporate to ensure efficiency are:
- Assure Overall Quality of the Irrigation System
- Design the Irrigation System for the Efficient and Uniform Distribution of Water
- Install the Irrigation System to Meet the Design Criteria
- Maintain the Irrigation System for Optimum Performance
- Manage the Irrigation System to Respond to the Changing Requirement for Water in the Landscape
Implementing an effective filtration system is the perfect way to meet these guidelines.
For agriculture irrigation, the best decision is often to install a centrifugal separator upstream of sand media filters as a way to remove the larger sand and solids particles first (with the separator), and then the smaller particles and light organic next (using the sand media filters). Fewer and more efficient backwashing cycles are the result, leading to longer equipment life and less water waste.
Download FREE Filtration Information Guides
Download our Filtration Guides, complete with color photos and valuable advice on what types of filters to use. These filtration guides have all the information you need to start following Best Practices in irrigation filtration.
Download the Residential and Landscape Irrigation Solutions Guide, LS-847
Download the Agriculture Irrigation Solutions Guide, LS-848
The important role that water plays in California today and the battles over its usage are a harbinger of the issues other states and countries will face in the near future. Water is needed for residential use as well as in business, and in agricultural-rich California the water requirements for crop irrigation makes it even more important. So the desire to use water wisely is on the minds of everyone in California, and will continue to be even more so in the future.
A “Blue Revolution” Being Urged by Major Research Universities
As reported by National Geographic, three research universities -- including one in California -- are focusing their attention on water issues and asking tough questions about the best use of water and innovative methods and equipment to use it more wisely. The three universities are:
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, which is about to begin a two-year campus-wide focus on water issues
- Michigan State University, which sits in the midst of the Great Lakes and is one of the most water wealthy areas in the U.S., and has more than 100 faculty members working on water issues and their own Water Sciences Center
- California State University at Fresno. Sitting in the middle of the Central Valley -- the most productive agricultural region in the world -- the university farms hundreds of acres of its own land in addition being home to the International Center for Water Technology (ICWT). The center is a test-bed for independent research and new technologies. In addition to the approximately 120 local companies with water-related interests, many in the valley are now calling this part of California the “Blue Tech Valley”. The university’s commitment to water research is growing even greater as it looks into the future and plans to add eight (8) new faculty positions over the next 2 years dedicated to water technology and water research. Their stated goal is to make Blue Tech Valley the Silicon Valley of water technology.
$1,000 Scholarships To Reward Water Study and Innovation
To aid in this push towards increased research and study in the field of water usage, two Blue Tech Valley companies -- the Claude Laval Corporation (LAKOS) and Laval Underground Surveys -- encourage today’s youth to strive for new water innovations by awarding two scholarships to students planning to work in this field.
Every year, two college students are each awarded $1,000 towards their education to study in some kind of a water related field. The Ben Everson Scholarships are named in honor of Ben Everson, a long time employee of both companies who personified the value of hard work, dedication, and belief in the future promise of America’s youth. Successful candidates for the scholarship must be part of a family with experience in the groundwater or irrigation industry.
Apply Before July 1st
The deadline to apply for this year’s scholarship is July 1st, 2012. Winners will be notified by August 1st. To apply for the scholarship, visit beneversonscholarship.com.
Last year’s “Where in the World is a LAKOS Solution?” photo contest was a huge success. People from all over the world submitted installation photos of their LAKOS filters and separators. That’s why LAKOS is bringing back the popular contest for 2012.
Revamped with even more prizes and chances to win, the “What’s Your LAKOS Story?” contest is again asking you to submit your stories and photos of LAKOS products wherever they are installed. With a new focus on the entry description and less on just the photo itself, you don’t have to be a professional photographer to win - the more detailed and descriptive your entry is, the better your chances to win! And don't forget how easy it is to shoot a quick video with your smartphone !
More Prizes Than Ever!
Any LAKOS filtration installation is eligible. From decades old to brand new, irrigation to comfort cooling, residential to industrial - as long as there’s a LAKOS story, it can be entered!
Each quarter will have:
- A Grand Prize. The grand prize winner will have the choice between either a $500 Amazon gift card or a new Apple iPad (commonly referred to as the iPad3).
- Second and Third place finalists. Each will be awarded $50 Amazon gift cards.
LAKOS judges will base their choices on the details and uniqueness of the stories, as well as the quality of the photos included. Each quarter the winners will be announced on our website, as well as the LAKOS Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and Google+ accounts.
Enter The Contest Today!
So What’s Your LAKOS Story? Click here to enter today! Simply fill out the form and attach your photo or short video. At the end of each of the remaining quarters in 2012 (ending in June, September, and December) the judges will vote and announce the winners! It could be YOU, and you will have your choice of a new iPAD or $500 worth of Amazon merchandise, including products ranging from expresso machines to wine racks to netbooks to fishing and hunting gear !
From the Thames River in England to Mitchell County, Georgia, this winter’s lack of rainfall is causing historical droughts all over the globe. This means that groundwater levels are at an unprecedented low, hitting hard in agriculturally rich areas like the Central Valley of California and many others. The most recent reports show that the California mountain snowpack is only at 30% of its historical average. That means farmers could get only 50% of the water requested for them by the public agencies that supply water for nearly a million acres of irrigated farmland in California.
This Week Is National Groundwater Awareness Week In The USA
With these record low levels of groundwater all over the world, it is important now more than ever to do our part to protect this precious resource. NGWA’s National Groundwater Awareness Week comes at a perfect time, as the weather starts to warm up and more water is needed for crops and other uses.
One of the best ways to preserve groundwater is by adding filtration to a water system. Residential filtration or filtration during irrigation are great ways to not only clean water from unwanted solids, but are also efficient ways of saving water. Sand build up can clog pipes, water treatment systems, appliances, and create problems for water heaters or pressure systems. A clogged solenoid or control valve stuck in the "open" position can cause over watering. Filtration can protect your water system from all sorts of problematic solids, such as sand, silt, grit, and algae. With increasingly limited amounts of available groundwater, it’s important that we use what we have to its fullest potential.
Growing Future Generations of Groundwater Preservers
As with all precious resources, having a protective industry is key to groundwater’s preservation. A network of thousands of professionals work every day to help conserve this natural resource. LAKOS is dedicated to expanding this important industry to future generations.
That’s why LAKOS is once again offering the annual Ben Everson Scholarship. The $1,000 scholarship is awarded each year to two students pursuing a college degree in a water related field.
Apply For FREE College Money TODAY!
Click here to see all of the details and to download the application form. The deadline to apply is July 1, 2012. All high school seniors and current college students are eligible to apply, but applicants must have a family tie to someone in the groundwater or irrigation profession. Let’s all stay focused on making the best use of water that we possibly can -- and continue to encourage new ideas and products that help use it in the most efficient ways possible.
Groundwater Innovation Moves Forward
Water in itself doesn’t seem new and exciting. It hasn’t changed much since the Garden of Eden. But the process in which we treat this precious resource is constantly evolving to be faster, cleaner, and more efficient. Groundwater plays an increasingly important role in ecosystems across the globe, so new technology and forward thinking are necessary to keep it clean for generations to come.
TwistIIClean Filter A Winner in Product of the Year Competition
Each year the organizers of the World Ag Exposition select their Products of the Year. Yesterday they made their selections for 2012, and the TwistIIClean sediment filter from LAKOS has been named to their list! The newest filter from the most trusted name in separator filtration eliminates cleaning hassles and keeps sand out of residential water supplies. The TwistIIClean will be on display at the World Ag Exposition in Tulare (California) on February 14-16, 2012, along with many other LAKOS Groundwater and Agricultural filtration products. The TwistIIClean received a Top-10 Honorable Mention in the competition.
Homeowners and Installers Alike Praise the TwistIIClean Filter
The World Ag Expo team of judges are not the only ones who have been impressed by the effectiveness of the TwistIIClean. Read some comments and testimonials from people who have already tried this product.
- "Once again LAKOS has come up with a functional and easy-to-use product. The TwistIIClean not only efficiently traps sand and sediment, but with a simple turn of the handle to flush and clean the unit, maintenance is a snap. From a company that always listens and responds to its customers, I would expect nothing less."
- " ...The fact that the TwistIIClean filter can be purged and cleaned without shutting down the pump, makes this filter the best I have used without doubt!"
The innovation that can be found in the TwistIIClean carries over into all of the LAKOS products, including separators that prevent sand damage to pumps and valves in water wells.
Pump Protection Separator Saves City Water Well
One city in Illinois desperately needed some filtration innovation at one of their municipal water wells that was supposed to provide clean water to residents.The well was so contaminated with sandstone grains that it had to be shut down. It seemed like their only option was to go through a rehabilitation process that could cost the city upwards of $150,000.
A LAKOS Pump Protection Separator (PPS) was installed in order to save the well that had been previously deemed unusable. For a fraction of what a complete rehabilitation would have cost, LAKOS successfully removed the sandstone grains that were infiltrating the city’s water.
Download The FREE City of Rochelle Case Study
Get the whole story on how LAKOS saved the City of Rochelle’s municipal water well from expensive well rehabilitation. Download the full case study with color photos here and quotes from the customer.
Over a year ago, we noted here how farmers and ranchers were embracing the latest communication technology in their normal work day. Thanks to the ever expanding digital world that we live in, agriculture technology has come a long way since that time.
Smart Phones and Mobile Apps On The Farm
It’s no secret that smartphone usage is on the rise. According to one Nielsen report, as of July 2011, 40% of mobile phone usage was with smartphones, and mobile data traffic has doubled in the last 12 months. Another stunning report shows that in the first six months of 2011 alone, Americans sent and received 1.138 trillion text messages. For farmers and ranchers, development of mobile applications running on these smart phones is also on the increase. Today there is a wide variety of mobile phone "apps" to choose from, including: seed selection tools, irrigation management, news and weather. Many more may be on the way, as recent trends indicate 2011 may end with 8 billion Android app downloads and 6 billion for the Apple Iphone. The two combined for 4 billion downloads in 2010. The modern farmer can carry all this technology around conveniently in his pocket. Together with Global Positioning Systems (GPS), this technology is changing the way farming is done.
For many in rural areas, utilizing the web through smartphones, tablets, and laptops is faster, cheaper, and more convenient than more traditional methods of communication. In the last 10 years, Internet access on farms has grown nearly 20%.
Cattle Ranchers Also Doing Things Differently
Technology is also changing life on the ranch -- and today's modern cattleman does things quite differently than Ben, Hoss, and the other Cartwrights did years ago (watch a rerun of Bonanza if you don't recognize those names). For instance, radio frequency identification (RFID) chips inserted into cattle ear tags help track their movements and determines how often they have been to a feeding area or other areas on the ranch. Electronic Identifcation readers (EID) mounted on posts and other locations read the tags as the cattle pass by (much like a bar code wand can read a bar code in a physical goods inventory). Other pedometry tools measure cow leg activity as a predictor of preferred breeding times.
One family-run dairy farm that has been in operation since 1783 recently installed fiber optics lines, web cams, and wireless internet throughout their new, state-of-the-art barn. Now they can remotely keep an eye on a pregnant cow, or even know when one in the herd might be sick. Computers track the milk production of each cow, and when averages are low, it can indicate an illness.
Other Innovative Agricultural Products
Innovation is not limited to improved communication devices, but includes other products used on the farm as well. Many farms and ranches rely on wells for fresh water to feed crops and cattle, and with that can come unwanted sand and contaminants in the water supply. Sand can clog or damage the impellers and bearings in submersible and turbine pumps. Filtration solutions can prevent this from occuring. As an alternative to filtering the sand before the water leaves a well, solutions also exist to deal with sand as it enters a residence. A new filtration combination can be the answer to dirty water problems at homes and on farms and ranches throughout the world.
One family in Arizona was facing a severe sand problem in their residential water supply. They found the answer to their water dilemma in a powerful centrifugal separator and sediment filter. They installed a LAKOS SandMaster Plus alongside a TwistIIClean sediment filter, with each handling a different part of the problem. Together that combination saved countless dollars by preventing sand damage to home appliances and other equipment repairs.
Download the Latest Case Study Details NOW!
Click Here to download your FREE copy of this new case study - complete with color photos and installation details - to see how the LAKOS SandMaster Plus and TwistIIClean saved the day for this Arizona family!