Thursday, January 11, 2007

Living Machine

What is a Living Machine?

A Living Machine is an advanced biofilter that has been designed to treat blackwater sewage. What demarks the living machine is the fact that it does the job of eliminating the human threat to our lakes, streams and oceans, through the purification of our raw sewage. For most people, the difference between whitewater greywater and blackwater is unknown. There are three things that make this innovative idea in biofiltration and wastewater management a real Living Machine, aesthetic appeal, reliable performance and high quality final effluent suitable for a variety of reuse applications.

Living Machines do the same job nature would do (if we gave her the chance). Take blackwater (also known as sewage) and return it to its natural whitewater state (unpolluted by human waste).

Ecological Solutions For The 21st Century
Ocean Arks International, founded in 1981 by visionary Ecological Designer Dr. John Todd, is a global leader in the field of ecological water purification. In response to the alarming rate of natural resource exploitation and depletion, our mission is to disseminate the ideas and practices of ecological sustainability throughout the world.

Domestic Pollution and Sewage
Domestic pollution is the stuff that runs down household drains along with the tap water. That means sewage—850 billion gallons of which gushed untreated into waterways in 2004. But it also means chemicals like detergents, lotions, and even drugs that our bodies don’t absorb fully. Scientists are only beginning to record what happens when those substances reach marine animals.

When sewer systems overflow, as they do during many rainstorms, untreated sewage runs into rivers and out to beaches. Dangerous levels of bacteria mean beaches have to be closed to swimmers. Even so, the Environmental Protection Agency recorded an estimated 3,500 to 5,500 illnesses from polluted water in 2004. Costal Ocean Institute

16 million liters of raw sewage... Of all the environmental initiatives proposed to take place within the Gulf of Maine, one of the greatest improve-ments to its socio-economic potential might well be the Saint John, New Brunswick, Harbour Cleanup. Often misquoted as being a dredging or habitat recovery operation, the term 'Harbour Cleanup' simply refers to the municipal infrastructure project that will bring an end to the practice of discharging 16 million litres (4.2 million gallons) of raw sewage into the Gulf of Maine and other watercourses each day. And while it is true that other municipalities on Canada's east coast (including Halifax, Nova Scotia and St. John's, Newfoundland) discharge raw sewage into their harbours, Saint John, New Brunswick, has the unenviable distinction of being the only municipality to have open sewers running through the heart of the city. The deposition of untreated wastewater into our urban streams has created third-world conditions in a country that champions itself as a world leader in protecting its natural capital.

BC is the cruise industry’s toilet
BC also risks becoming the toilet of the Pacific Northwest, as it is far behind neighbouring US jurisdictions in setting and enforcing environmental standards for the cruise industry. Alaska, California and Washington states have all made moves to protect their marine environments, and have been successful in reducing environmental impacts. BC waters, on the other hand, are under federal jurisdiction, and Transport Canada says it will be 2010 or later before mandatory regulations governing cruise ship discharges are implemented.