Illinois Sustainable Technology Center announces 1-billion-gallon water challenge

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[April 17, 2014]  CHAMPAIGN A Billion Gallon Water Challenge to preserve and protect water resources in Illinois was announced last week by the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center.

ISTC, a division of the Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has committed the resources of its sponsored research program for 2014 to projects that will quantifiably contribute to its goal to save 1 billion gallons of water in Illinois. The center also is encouraging the people of Illinois to join the challenge by making a personal pledge at the Billion Gallon Water Challenge website:

The challenge was announced April 11 at the Illinois Water Day Conference on the campus of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This was part of the U.N.'s World Water Day recognition. ISTC presented posters about the Billion Gallon Water Challenge and the center's other water use and reuse projects.

The safety and accessibility of water supplies has been cited as a major concern by the World Health Organization, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The National Academy of Engineering named the quality and quantity of water as one of the "Grand Challenges for Engineering."

Now the Illinois Legislature has passed versions of legislation that will help provide $2 billion to improve drinking and wastewater infrastructure across the state and is working to expand that program to include urban flooding and cleaning up pollution in Illinois rivers, lakes and streams.

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"Even in a water-rich state like ours, competition for this resource has increased, and will continue to increase," said ISTC Director Kevin O'Brien. "Drought conditions around the nation have impacted Illinois severely over the past few years. We need to pursue every avenue to preserve water now and for the next generations."

The ISTC research solicitation invited faculty, engineers, consultants and others to propose innovations to minimize the use and waste of Illinois freshwater resources needed for drinking, hygiene, irrigation, industry, habitats, recreation and many other needs.

[Text from file received from Illinois Sustainable Technology Center]


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