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In the United States it’s hard for us to imagine, but an estimated 3 million to 4 million people–mostly low-income children in developing nations–die each year from cholera, typhoid, dysentery and other water-borne diseases. This happens when people drink contaminated water.

Miches is a small seaside tropical paradise. But the residents of Miramar, a small community in Miches in one of the poorest provinces in the Dominican Republic, have no sanitary sewer treatment–and no drinking water treatment. Their water is a source of disease.

Engineers Without Borders will bring clean drinking water to Miramar

Engineers Without Borders will bring clean drinking water to Miramar

That’s where the Student Chapter of Engineers Without Borders comes in. This summer, these student engineers will travel to Miramar to bring clean drinking water to the 500 residents there.

The project will include a well, pumps and controls, water storage tank and distribution system. After construction is complete, the students will train local residents in the operation and maintenance of the system. Not only will the project improve the lives of the people in Miramar, but the students will get real-world experience in designing and building a drinking water system.

The Florida Rotary Clubs and Florida Section-American Water Works Association both contributed thousands of dollars towards the project.

Here’s a great video about Miches and the area where the project is taking place. Someday, I hope I have the time and opportunity to participate in a project like this.

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Usually water and electricity are inextricably linked. You can’t produce and distribute clean water without power–and you can’t produce electricity without water. But my friend, Bill Edgar recently visited a water plant that provided clean water for an entire village–with not a single kilowatt. Here’s a copy of the e-mail I received from Bill, owner of CEU Plan.

Have you ever seen a water plant operate without any electrical power?  I had to see, to believe with my own eyes! 
 
Recently during the Memorial Day weekend, I traveled to Honduras to catch-up with some graduate students from Cornell University – Civil & Environmental Engineering School.  These students from the Agua Clara Program have developed a unique water treatment plant without any electric metering pump, electrical connections – without a power meter for the plant operation.  The water supply comes from the mountaintop, where the streams are captured, sent through a unique sedimentation basin and disinfected; prior to storage and distribution to the villagers.  These Young Professionals (YP’s) have developed a truly workable and unique concept for meeting the needs of small and rural villages in Central America.  My hat is off to them, as this is a true example of how working together can solve many environmental problems.  So many times, YP’s are directed through their parents, “Do as I say!” which has caused problems in the creative and experimental drives of our leaders for tomorrow.  Should you be interested in further information on Agua Clara, a non-profit organization, and a great group of YP’s from Cornell putting their education to work in a great way:
 
Link:    
https://confluence.cornell.edu/display/AGUACLARA/Home
 
The mentoring program utilized by Monroe Weber-Shrink, director is Agua Clara, is shared by many.  As many of us look at our role in the coming years to strengthen and maintain the operation and maintenance of water/wastewater treatment plant facilities; we need to reach out to our young professionals.  In many ways, the same, as we were introduced or brought into the field many years ago.  How many remember, the ole’ plant manager or shift head sitting down with the new and young-at-heart trainee, to show them the ropes, to show them how to operate this or that, and most importantly, how to pass the certification exam!  It is time, we revise the ole’ concept to the many new and forthcoming replacements of today.  In order to maintain the structural and operational integrity of facilities, today, it would be a great practice to reach out to our young professionals and provide the ole’ war stories and fundamental experiences to increase and broaden their knowledge basis. 
 
CEU Plan would like to assist in this venture, should you know or have a colleague interested in the water/wastewater field; send us their contact information.  Please forward their name, address, phone number, and/or e-mail address to us.  We would like to forward to them, a couple of complimentary courses to spark that interest into becoming a licensed operator.  Many of us have miles to travel and sharing our experiences and knowledge with the up and coming deserves a place in our lives.  We appreciate your interest and support of our program for many years, our mission continues to grow, as we reach out to the new generation of water and wastewater operators.  
 
Have a Great Weekend,
 
William W. Edgar
CEU Plan  – general manager
 
Send your suggestions to: 
support@ceuplan.org

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