WATER – Waste not, Want not! – By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

WATER – Waste not, Want not!

Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Water, and not oil, will be the source of future world conflicts.

It will be the biggest threat to world peace. It is New Year’s Eve. Thousands are in Manhattan to watch the ball drop. By the time the clock strikes midnight, until lunch the following day, New York would have consumed enough energy to supply the Caribbean for a year and millions of liters of water would be wasted.

It is lunchtime in a New York City Public School. By the time the session is over gallons of milk and sandwiches and fruit will go to waste. They will be dumped without being touched. When we waste food we waste energy.  

We waste water. Food on the table involves a complex chain, from land preparation to production, transportation, storage, marketing and packaging and finally consumption.

When we throw away food we waste all the energy that is used in its production. Scientists estimate that waste in the United States each year is equivalent to around 400 million barrels of oil and this can power the country for about 2 weeks.

Read more: Waste not, Want not – By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


  • Leslie Chin  On 01/19/2016 at 5:51 am

    This is a classical case of Capitalism at work. Capitalism is like a shark which requires constant motion to breathe, it requires constant cash flow to maintain profits. Initially there were benefits from Capitalism – useful products, infrastructure construction, jobs and wealth. However we have reached saturation, we have built all the infrastructures we require – railways, highways, airports, power stations; and have accumulated all the wealth we need. Wealth is now migrating to the 1% who control the economy. To keep the money flowing Capitalists have devised many ways to keep us demanding goods and services and to keep us spending. We have built-in obsolescence, annual upgrades, the latest fashions, made to break discardable products, Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day, Black Friday, Christmas, Boxing Day. New Years, etc. Manufacturers do not consider the pollution of the land, water and air their products cause or the disposal problems of the products at the end of life. These links show what happens to discarded plastics and products.


    • Albert  On 01/19/2016 at 12:17 pm

      Leslie……….To keep the money flowing Capitalists have devised many ways to keep us demanding goods and services and to keep us spending……

      Got to maximise the company’s proft margin.

      The British took a while to introduce the MBA program arguing that it teaches students how to make money when the purpose of an education was to serve humanity.
      The capitalist might argue his objective is to produce products that consumers need and encourage ( cannot force) them to buy. .Over consumption and waste is the consumer and government problem to solve.

      We still have products in demand and not developed: the cure for cancer, diabetes and other diseases, clean efficient energy, plants to convert sea water for drinking, faster growing crops, weapons to kill enemies efficiently.reduce aging.

      The market place (demand,supply and price) will take care of problems.

  • demerwater  On 01/19/2016 at 6:25 am

    Dr. Narine deserves our recognition for highlighting this issue.

    “Since 70 per cent of the world’s water is utilized for agriculture a water crisis will lead to immense damage in agricultural output and food markets.” In reality, it is 70 per cent of only 3 per cent of the estimated freshwater resources of the planet.
    Source: http://www.eoearth.org/view/article/152861/
    In the opinion of the scientists whose business is to study these things, water will be the limiting factor of life on earth.
    I vividly recall the grassroots efforts of GUYSUCO to conserve gas during the energy crisis of the (19) 70’s. The high cost of fuel was a great incentive. I often wonder what would be our incentive to conserve water.
    And I am reminded of an (East Indian) speaker on this subject. She snared us all into the concept of water shortage. “But you get water each time you open the tap! How can there be a shortage?” She then described, in the details that are conceived only in personal experience, her growing up in a village in India, where the single communal water spigot ran for only an hour or two each day!
    “That is water shortage!” she ended in a sobering tone.
    We have all experienced “load shedding” – when the electricity supply was cut off around Georgetown on a schedule.
    It is my considered opinion that the surest way to obtain action is to demonstrate what life could be like without water. Shut down the supply for an hour or two.
    A minute of science – if you can bear the mangled pun.
    A plumbing instructor surprised me with the declaration, “Our increasing life span is directly related with our increasing ability to separate our water resources into two separate systems – potable and sewer.”

  • dhanpaulnarine  On 01/20/2016 at 10:02 am

    Let us spare a thought for the people of Flint in Michigan where their water has been contaminated with lead. The schools in Detroit are no better and there will be an investigation into crumbling buildings and poor standards.

  • demerwater  On 01/22/2016 at 6:17 am

    It is quite outside of my comprehension how men and women, elected / appointed to serve and protect the public interest, are allowed to flout their oath of office; and purposefully endanger the physical health (lead in the water) and the mental development (crumbling school buildings) of our most precious human resource – the children.
    I pity those elected / appointed Public Servants (indeed!). They did not have the benefit of the kind of edification that it was my good fortune to obtain. (Thank you, parents, elders, Carmelite Sisters and Jesuit Priests).
    Precepts like this one;
    “Something attempted, something done, Has earned a nights repose.”
    ―Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
    Can these people sleep when the night comes?

  • Gigi  On 01/23/2016 at 12:56 am

    @ Leslie Chin, thanks for posting the video. It is eye opening. This ties in with an article I recently read over at Naked Capitalism where a poster pasted this memo below between Larry Summers (who went on to become an influential policymaker in the Clinton administration), who was the chief economist over at the World Bank at the time, and Lant Pritchett who worked under him on encouraging more dirty industries and pollution in least developed countries (see below). Reading about this reminded me of a familiar situation that took place in Guyana when I was around 10. I remembered hearing about and seeing the gigantic US trash barge sitting off the coast of Guyana that Burnham agreed to be dumped in Guyana in exchange for money he pocketed.

    DATE: December 12, 1991

    TO: Distribution
    FR: Lawrence H. Summers
    Subject: GEP

    ‘Dirty’ Industries: Just between you and me, shouldn’t the World Bank be encouraging MORE migration of the dirty industries to the LDCs [Least Developed Countries]? I can think of three reasons:

    1) The measurements of the costs of health impairing pollution depends on the foregone earnings from increased morbidity and mortality. From this point of view a given amount of health impairing pollution should be done in the country with the lowest cost, which will be the country with the lowest wages. I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that.

    2) The costs of pollution are likely to be non-linear as the initial increments of pollution probably have very low cost. I’ve always thought that under-populated countries in Africa are vastly UNDER-polluted, their air quality is probably vastly inefficiently low compared to Los Angeles or Mexico City. Only the lamentable facts that so much pollution is generated by non-tradable industries (transport, electrical generation) and that the unit transport costs of solid waste are so high prevent world welfare enhancing trade in air pollution and waste.

    3) The demand for a clean environment for aesthetic and health reasons is likely to have very high income elasticity. The concern over an agent that causes a one in a million change in the odds of prostrate[sic] cancer is obviously going to be much higher in a country where people survive to get prostrate[sic] cancer than in a country where under 5 mortality is 200 per thousand. Also, much of the concern over industrial atmosphere discharge is about visibility impairing particulates. These discharges may have very little direct health impact. Clearly trade in goods that embody aesthetic pollution concerns could be welfare enhancing. While production is mobile the consumption of pretty air is a non-tradable.
    The problem with the arguments against all of these proposals for more pollution in LDCs (intrinsic rights to certain goods, moral reasons, social concerns, lack of adequate markets, etc.) could be turned around and used more or less effectively against every Bank proposal for liberalization.
    — Lawrence Summers, [6][7]

    Skippy…. file under when everything is a market and the smartest guys in the room are looking for advantage….


  • demerwater  On 01/23/2016 at 6:26 am

    “hearing about and seeing the gigantic US trash barge sitting off the coast of Guyana”. As far as I have been able to ascertain, the Mobro 4000 and its load of garbage was never anywhere near Guyana’s Atlantic coastline – certainly not within the unaided eyesight.
    It is my personal and highly subjective opinion that the only external garbage negotiated and imported into Guyana was “The People’s Temple”.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: