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Old 08-12-2015, 03:09 PM   #1
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California using "Shadeballs" to conserve reservoir waters

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Los Angeles is hoping that a 36-cent plastic ball — well, 96 million of them, to be precise — could help the city protect and conserve its drinking water amid California's historic drought.

L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti released 20,000 so-called "shade balls" into the Los Angeles Reservoir on Monday, bringing the total number of balls floating on the water to 96 million.

The small, black plastic balls are designed to protect water quality by blocking sunlight, preventing unwanted chemical reaction and curtailing algae blooms, according to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the utility company that owns and manages the reservoir.

The shade balls also come with the added benefit of reducing evaporation by nearly 300 million gallons (about 1.1 billion litres) a year — enough to supply drinking water to 8,100 people, said city councillor Mitchell Englander.

"As the drought continues, it has never been more important to focus on innovative ways to maintain the highest quality drinking water for our four million residents," he said.

​The shade balls require no assembly or labour, except for occasionally rotating them, the utility company said. The $34.5-million US initiative could help the company save $250 million compared to other alternatives for water quality protection.

California, the most populous state in the U.S., is currently battling a multi-year drought. The dry spell has resulted in unprecedented water restrictions, water waste crackdowns, and even "drought shaming.

Sauce: 96 million 'shade balls' rolled into Los Angeles Reservoir as water protection - Trending - CBC News
Covering your reservoir in balls... interesting.
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Old 08-12-2015, 03:39 PM   #2
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is it just me or does 36 cents per ball seem really expensive?
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Old 08-12-2015, 03:44 PM   #3
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Depends. They have to be UV Ray resistant, bacterial resistant, food quality grade etc
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Old 08-12-2015, 03:57 PM   #4
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Old 08-12-2015, 04:16 PM   #5
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Old 08-12-2015, 04:35 PM   #6
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Old 08-12-2015, 06:02 PM   #7
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interesting that they're black... wouldn't white reflect the sunlight more effectively?
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Old 08-12-2015, 07:41 PM   #8
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N here we are selling 1M literes of water to Nestle for $1. Crusty has no economic sense. We need a Sheik from Dubai to run BC.
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Old 08-12-2015, 07:46 PM   #9
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interesting that they're black... wouldn't white reflect the sunlight more effectively?
White would reflect more light but that's not the point. They are black because they absorb UV much better. Keep in mind that it isn't necessarily heat that is the issue, it's the energy emitted as UV radiation/light.

Water has a relatively high specific heat capacity. So water can get hot without evaporating (breaking of hydrogen bonds). Whereas UV radiation/light that goes unchecked can readily break these bonds and cause water to evaporate.

So by having black balls, it might absorb more heat but at the same time, it absorbs UV which would cause substantially more water evaporation than heat could ever do.
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Old 08-12-2015, 08:45 PM   #10
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am astonished at how much water they expect it to save from evaporating
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Old 08-12-2015, 09:10 PM   #11
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do the balls come with cancer warnings?

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Old 08-12-2015, 10:22 PM   #12
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wouldn't a tarp be more effective? like pools have
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:26 PM   #13
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wouldn't a tarp be more effective? like pools have
Pool covers are like giant bubble wrap, so they float on the water. That also makes them heavier, stiffer, and more fragile. Plus when it does rain, the water would just collect on top - with the balls, the water will run through to replenish the reservoir.
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:29 PM   #14
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wouldn't a tarp be more effective? like pools have
This basically acts as a tarp that molds to the shape and level of the reservoir. Plus a tarp of that scale would be, IMO, completely unfeasible due to environmental requirements alone (weight of rainfall collecting at the center, wind, degradation from the elements, etc.).
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:29 PM   #15
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Pool covers are like giant bubble wrap, so they float on the water. That also makes them heavier, stiffer, and more fragile. Plus when it does rain, the water would just collect on top - with the balls, the water will run through to replenish the reservoir.
yeah I thought about the rain too but they could open the tarp for the weather

like MG1 noted regarding supposed health concerns, I imagine Californians especially would be insanely paranoid about it
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:31 PM   #16
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yeah I thought about the rain too but they could open the tarp for the weather

like MG1 noted regarding supposed health concerns, I imagine Californians especially would be insanely paranoid about it
They've been using these balls in 4 of their 6 reservoirs since 2008. This is the 5th and most prolific of the reservoirs, though.
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:41 PM   #17
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Does the $34.5 million include clean up fees? Imagine picking up 96 million balls, or have to replace them due to end of useful life.
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:53 PM   #18
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^fuck, driving the boat to pick up the balls is gonna be so much fun
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:59 PM   #19
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yeah I thought about the rain too but they could open the tarp for the weather
I have a 32x16' pool and rolling the solar cover up on that is a two-person job, just to keep the thing rolling straight and not drifting to one side or the other on the spool.

Now I imagine what a nightmare it would be to do that on a pool that's 100 times the width and length...

OR, you just cover this super-giant pool with a bunch of little balls, get all the benefits of the pool cover, without the need to roll it back to let rain in. Same results, far less work.
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Old 08-12-2015, 11:19 PM   #20
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Old 08-13-2015, 07:25 AM   #21
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N here we are selling 1M literes of water to Nestle for $1. Crusty has no economic sense. We need a Sheik from Dubai to run BC.
Holy mother of fuck.

Yourself along with the other people who continue to harp on about this, even after the truth about this bullshit fear mongering news story came out, are all fucking idiots.

Probably the same dumbasses who think BC doesn't have or need pipelines to operate, and that the oil industry is Canada's enemy.

Go educate yourself from a website other than vancity buzz, or just shut the fuck up. Every god damn thread about water conservation, the environment, or government funding, this ridiculous non-issue about nestle and their water comes up.

Would you rather nestle fire the almost 100 people who work at their facility, and pack their shit up, and take the millions of dollars in taxes they pay to the government elsewhere?

We seriously need to deport some of these fucking environmentalists, before they send this countries entire economy even further down this river of shit.
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Old 08-13-2015, 07:48 AM   #22
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I missed Kony 2012, maybe I can get in on Nestlé 2015?
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Old 08-13-2015, 08:17 AM   #23
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Holy mother of fuck.

Yourself along with the other people who continue to harp on about this, even after the truth about this bullshit fear mongering news story came out, are all fucking idiots.

Probably the same dumbasses who think BC doesn't have or need pipelines to operate, and that the oil industry is Canada's enemy.

Go educate yourself from a website other than vancity buzz, or just shut the fuck up. Every god damn thread about water conservation, the environment, or government funding, this ridiculous non-issue about nestle and their water comes up.

Would you rather nestle fire the almost 100 people who work at their facility, and pack their shit up, and take the millions of dollars in taxes they pay to the government elsewhere?

We seriously need to deport some of these fucking environmentalists, before they send this countries entire economy even further down this river of shit.
Maybe you missed the last few words of my post? "We need a Sheik from Dubai to run BC".... Maybe you are not familiar with Dubai and how its run; the country is run like a fuken business with profit in mind not to break even like most governments. So in the eyes of a Sheik, they would probably negotiate a better rate with Nestle, sell the excess to LA and probably import it back to BC at lower rates (exactly how Hydro operates) during low usage times.

Same goes for pipelines, watch Crusty negotiate some shitty deal.

Just look at the LNG deal, what is it 25yrs or something of tax free? Whats to say after 25yrs when the market is saturated and margins are low LNG won't be the gold pot we once thought?
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Old 08-13-2015, 08:19 AM   #24
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Maybe you missed the last few words of my post? "We need a Sheik from Dubai to run BC".... Maybe you are not familiar with Dubai and how its run; the country is run like a fuken business with profit in mind not to break even like most governments. So in the eyes of a Sheik, they would probably negotiate a better rate with Nestle, sell the excess to LA and probably import it back to BC at lower rates (exactly how Hydro operates) during low usage times.

Same goes for pipelines, watch Crusty negotiate some shitty deal.
And some people continue to utterly miss the point.

Google "Nestlé and NAFTA"
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Old 08-13-2015, 09:14 AM   #25
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Maybe you missed the last few words of my post? "We need a Sheik from Dubai to run BC".... Maybe you are not familiar with Dubai and how its run; the country is run like a fuken business with profit in mind not to break even like most governments. So in the eyes of a Sheik, they would probably negotiate a better rate with Nestle, sell the excess to LA and probably import it back to BC at lower rates (exactly how Hydro operates) during low usage times.

Same goes for pipelines, watch Crusty negotiate some shitty deal.

Just look at the LNG deal, what is it 25yrs or something of tax free? Whats to say after 25yrs when the market is saturated and margins are low LNG won't be the gold pot we once thought?
Besides the fact that you missed the point almost entirely as Soundy pointed out.

I honestly thought you were kidding about the Sheikh comment, now that I realize you weren't I just have no idea what to say any longer.

First off we can start with the most basic; selling power to those south of the border is a WHOLE lot easier than billions of litres of water. Trust me on this, I am currently building 4 converter stations in Alberta which are going to supply power to the entire province. Just the sheer logistics of moving billions of litres of water to sell is fucking retarded. Reminds me of that ridiculous crowd funding campaign that Shatner started in order to build a pipeline of water from Seattle to Cali, thank god that shit died.

As for the Sheikh comment, I'll just point out, that the Sheikh and the Emerati's have paid A LOT of money to build Dubai, money that has yet to be recovered, money that some say will never be recovered (Nobody will ever know because its not a matter of public record). Yes the actual day to day operation may run as a semi profitable business (again we can never be sure because for all we know all the reports generated are complete bullshit), but where do you think the money to build things like the Palm Island, Khalifa tower, and Al-Arab hotel came from? It didn't come from sources that any democratic government could ever tap into, I can guarantee you that.

So unless your ready to hand your democratic rights and submit yourself to governance from some rich crazy guy who can do whatever the fuck he wants, I'd really stop using this argument.

Also I highly doubt you've actually been to Dubai, because otherwise you wouldn't be praising them for their success so much. Allow me to enlighten you, go ahead and look up things like road tolls, insurance rates, and general day-to-day expenses for stuff in Dubai. Chances are if you Sheikh did come and takeover our part of this world, you wouldn't be wealthy enough to live here any longer. People here already complain about the tolls on the Port Mann, I could only imagine the riots that would ensue when you drive through 3 separate tolls in a single simple commute from richmond to Downtown.
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