Leigh Cassidy explains how her grain research led to a system which can purify water poisoned by arsenic in Bangladesh
A project to remove arsenic from groundwater in Bangladesh began by accident, when Dr Leigh Cassidy from Aberdeen University was working on technology to treat industrially contaminated water in the UK.
Cassidy, who was working on her Phd, thought draff, the residue of barley husks that is a byproduct of using grain in brewing alcohol products such as whisky, would act as a cleansing agent. The idea was brusquely dismissed by one colleague.
“I was told ‘don’t be stupid it will never work’,” Cassidy says. “But someone else said to go ahead.”
Cassidy did indeed go ahead, modifying the draff with a secret ingredient, transforming it into a cleansing agent. She is now credited as the inventor of the appropriately named Dram – she admits to trying to think of a clever name. Dram is short for device for the remediation and attenuation of multiple pollutants. Instead of using draff in Bangladesh, Dram will use local ingredients such as coconut shells or rice husks to act as the organic filter media that traps the arsenic.
The arsenic crisis in Bangladesh is considered by the World Health Organisation to be the largest mass poisoning of a population in human history. About 77 million people are at risk of arsenic poisoning despite the hundreds of millions of dollars spent in addressing the problem. One in five deaths in Bangladesh are due to arsenic poisoning.
Dram works using a stainless steel unit connected to contaminated water in a tubewell. The water is pumped into the bottom of the unit where it rises up through a bed of the organic filter media, binding the arsenic. Clean water is displaced and forced out of the top of the unit and through the built-in tap.
PurifAid, a Canadian social enterprise based in Toronto, Canada, founded by Shahreen Reza, who is of Bangladeshi origin, is working with Brac, the Bangladeshi NGO, to deploy Dram in Bangladesh. PurifAid is using a $100,000 (£60,000) award from Grand Challenges Canada to start the project in Bangladesh as soon as the political situation calms down. Tension is high in the country before the scheduled January elections.
The Latest on: Water cleanser
[google_news title=”” keyword=”Water cleanser” num_posts=”10″ blurb_length=”0″ show_thumb=”left”]
via Google News
The Latest on: Water cleanser
- Dutch military helps clean oil along beaches in Caribbean island of Bonaireon March 1, 2024 at 9:42 am
Dutch armed forces have been deployed to the Caribbean to help clean up oil affecting beaches in the island of Bonaire that originated from an offshore spill blamed on an overturned barge hundreds of ...
- The Right Way to Clean Your Dishwasher With Vinegaron March 1, 2024 at 7:35 am
Keep this kitchen workhorse sparkling by using vinegar to clean it.
- Missouri American Water investing $100 million in 2024 to identify and remove lead service lineson February 29, 2024 at 9:00 pm
Missouri American Water will replace the entire service line, including the customer-owned portion, if any part of the line contains lead or galvanized steel. The company worked collaboratively with ...
- Nearly $200 million from bipartisan law boosts Michigan's clean water initiativeson February 29, 2024 at 9:25 am
It's to help rebuild infrastructure as part of the MI Clean Water Plan. In 2021, the Biden Administration signed the bipartisan infrastructure law to help repair crumbling facilities around the nation ...
- Feds sue Idaho ranch, allege ranchers dumped dirt in river and violated Clean Water Acton February 27, 2024 at 3:19 pm
The EPA alleges the ranch built roads across the Bruneau River and filled in nearby wetlands without required permits.
- Massive water main break leaves city without clean wateron February 27, 2024 at 3:19 pm
The water line break was repaired late last night. Workers have been on site today restoring the road Park Ave that was busted through to reach the water pipes. But businesses today still had to ...
- Despite the Supreme Court Rolling Back Clean Water Protections, Some Lowans are Resisting the Decision and Fighting Backon February 26, 2024 at 6:44 pm
James Berge recalls a time when the water near his rural Iowa home was clean and clear. However, in recent years, he has noticed a troubling change. “It’s filled with algae and brown,” he laments, ...
- Can Taller Cover Crops Help Clean the Water in Farm Country?on February 26, 2024 at 4:00 pm
If a local pilot is successful, Pursell says it could help farmers transition out of the corn-soybean duoculture in a financially viable manner—and give taxpayers a return on their investment in the ...
- Brown announces upgrades for clean water, lead pipe replacement in Ohioon February 26, 2024 at 2:23 pm
Ohio, announced this week that the state of Ohio is receiving another major investment from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to upgrade aging water infrastructure, replace lead pipes and ...
- Clean Water Act ruling causes delays for local governments, developerson February 26, 2024 at 7:11 am
Some large-scale developments came to a halt last week after a historic court ruling said the transfer of Clean Water Act permitting from the federal government to the state in 2020 was an illegal ...
via Bing News