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Earth Intel

Intel Sucks Up Water Amid Drought In China 386

An anonymous reader sends along a Bloomberg piece on Intel and the coming water wars. "Intel is going head-to-head with businesses like Coca-Cola to swallow up scarce water resources in the developing world. According a 2009 report ... 2.4 billion of the world's population lives in 'water-stressed' countries such as China and India. Chip fabrication plants in those countries, as well factories such as the soft drink giant's bottling plants, are swallowing up scarce resources needed by the 1.6 billion people who rely on water for farming. ... Li Haifeng, vice president of sewage treatment company Beijing Enterprises Water Group, told Bloomberg, 'Wars may start over the scarcity of water.' China's 1.33 billion citizens each have 2,117 cubic meters of water available to them per year.... In the US, consumers can count on as much as 9,943 cubic meters."
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Intel Sucks Up Water Amid Drought In China

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  • by Mindcontrolled ( 1388007 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @02:44PM (#32390472)
    I suspect they included the amount of water used to produce the goods you consume, not only your immediate personal consumption.
  • by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @02:48PM (#32390500)
    There's a lot of indirect water use associated with modern life. The food you eat comes from crops and animals which need water irrigation and feed. The computer you're using has parts in it which were smelted and refined in processes which used lots of water. The electricity you're using comes from a plant which uses water as part of its cooling system. etc.
  • by sznupi ( 719324 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @03:05PM (#32390644) Homepage

    And in the process you're nearly the most wasteful place on Earth [], claiming almost 3 times more resources per capita than the most "lean" places with comparable standard of living.

  • Re:Capitalism !! (Score:1, Informative)

    by clarkkent09 ( 1104833 ) * on Saturday May 29, 2010 @03:16PM (#32390748)

    They have everything to do with socialism:


    Main Entry: socialism

    1 : any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods
    2 a : a system of society or group living in which there is no private property b : a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state
    3 : a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done

  • Re:Capitalism !! (Score:4, Informative)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @03:34PM (#32390886) Homepage Journal
    yea. a single fucking dictionary entry, encompasses the entire spectrum of a political ideology. alright. after all, if we look at the definition of human, it will come out that we are just 'monkeys with advanced advanced tool usage'. since we are homo sapiens sapiens. that makes us, well, just the same. []
  • Re:Capitalism !! (Score:2, Informative)

    by clarkkent09 ( 1104833 ) * on Saturday May 29, 2010 @03:43PM (#32390956)

    Just to clarify in case it is not obvious enough what I meant: in every case so far known where the government had assumed the ownership of the means of production and managed them centrally (i.e socialism - as per the definition above) it has failed to consistently feed the population, never mind provide them with any sort of life remotely comparable to that in the capitalist societies. Not to mention that in every such case the government has had to use force (not strong enough word, terror would be more appropriate) in order to stay in power.

    That is what socialism is. It's in the first sentence of your wikipedia entry! "Socialism is a political philosophy that encompasses various theories of economic organization based on either public or direct worker ownership and administration of the means of production and allocation of resources." If you want to talk about something completely different and call it "socialism" sorry but that's not ok, you need to find a new word. Those of you who think socialism is what they have in Sweden or whatever (amazingly many idiots out there) please read the dictionary definition above. What they have in some European countries is partly free market capitalism (VERY different thing from socialism) with a variety of the elements of welfare state thrown in (which only deals with the distribution of wealth not the production). Even that is failing, mainly because of the welfare part.

  • by mysidia ( 191772 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @04:23PM (#32391346)

    I would say the resources are available, but not being allocated to that purpose. Bottled drinks basically being a luxury/fun item..

    So think.. the bottling companies are like the network engineer that sits on the computer at work all day streaming Youtube and playing world of warcraft, using all the bandwidth on the T1, enjoying the luxury of the comuter game.

    Eventually a fight is going to break out between the Network engineer and the users trying to get actual work done, since WoW is making their connection so slow, and for some reason, nobody will do anything about the horribly slow T1 network connection...

    Meanwhile, there is a T3 sitting dormant, because it hasn't gotten configured yet, it's bought, and hooked up, but not linked into the network yet... so the CEO asks the IT manager why...

    'Well, the answer is, we are too busy, and we don't have enough network engineers to get all this stuff done... It's an infrastructure problem -- and we seem to not have enough engineering resources right now'

    See? Even if you have the resources, there's no guarantee an infrastructure problem gets solved. Even with all the $$$ and raw materials in the world, you need people to actually decide to have the work done, and lose the potential benefit of other ways they could use those resources instead :)

  • Re:Capitalism !! (Score:2, Informative)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @04:30PM (#32391448) Homepage Journal
    so, then, swedish, norwegians, finns, and danish are dying out of famine for the last 60 years ?

    or, are they on top of the world : []


    some european countries you speak of, are SOCIAL DEMOCRAT, which is a subset of SOCIALISM. in which, the government closely follows and regulates any activity in the country, and ensures minimum standards in all respects. also, they tax the upper part of the society, to fund and keep the lower rung of the society in good order. it is not 'variety of the elements of welfare state', its a SUBSET OF SOCIALISM.

    and, no, they are not failing in any respect. everything was going dandy, until the fucked up ayn randists in america, wall street, SCAMMED entire world by peddling poisonous investement tools, and breaking the world economy for decades to come. the global crisis affected each and every single individual bar the tribes in amazon, it was impossible for any country that does business with the outside world to escape it.

    read the human development index i linked above.
  • by Reziac ( 43301 ) * on Saturday May 29, 2010 @04:33PM (#32391476) Homepage Journal

    Some areas can legitimately cry drought, but China has dumped so much crud into its rivers that now ANYONE can walk on water. From what people who do business in China have told me, this is the root of their water issues right now -- not lack of water, but how much of it is no longer fit for ANY use.

  • pure water (Score:4, Informative)

    by OrangeTide ( 124937 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @04:35PM (#32391502) Homepage Journal

    Well coca-cola has been a leader in pretty sophisticated and very very large scale water purification systems. The water they put in put in their soft drinks is clean, clear, odorless and tasteless. They use the same water in their Dasani bottled water and charge 2x more than a coke, too bad their bottled water is so tasteless that you can pick up the smells of the plastic bottle before you get anything interesting from the water.

    But you do bring up a good point, coca-cola uses water and then ships it out on trucks and boats never to be seen again locally because it is part of their product. While Intel would be using the water for an industrial process and would need to dispose of it. Let us hope that their waste water doesn't contain arsenic or antimony, two common silicon doping agents. I wouldn't want to drink Intel's waste water even through a simplistic purifier unless it was carefully tested.

  • by rolfwind ( 528248 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @05:14PM (#32391882)

    It's not interesting, it's stupid. []

    I think in Phoenix, Arizona they banned any further homes from having a grass turf and going instead with native vegetation which is what they ought to be doing.

    Golf courses are a major culprit: []

  • fusion (Score:2, Informative)

    by zogger ( 617870 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @05:15PM (#32391888) Homepage Journal

    We used to make our own distilled water for topping off the lead acid batteries for the solar PV arrays. Just a watertight box with a clear sheet of glass on top and a place to pour water in and a place to get the distilled out basically. The glass is at a slight slope so the water droplets run down into the gutter-collector, then out to the collection jug. You can get at least two gallons a day in georgia during the summer from a 3x6 foot collector box. (that was a commercial unit, they can be built easily enough though)

    We have the tech to do solar fusion power distilled, it's pretty low tech really, just takes a lot of space for mass quantities, but it *is* quite doable. You can get enough to at least cover minimum drinking and cooking requirements as long as you have a source of not suitable water to start with.

  • figures (Score:2, Informative)

    by zogger ( 617870 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @05:42PM (#32392094) Homepage Journal

    That's probably a pretty high figure most likely from some estimates using 100% artificially irrigated land and pure corn fed in a feedlot. I know I have put some larger feeder calves in a barn (just temporarily, under a week) where they were only getting some richer/better quality hay with just a small scoop each of corn, mostly hay fed in other words, and during their growth stage where they were slapping on a pound a day, and no way in heck were they drinking a hundred gallons apiece a day, not even close to that, more like around 5-7 gallons a day (IIRC didn't exactly measure it, but didn't need to fill the hundred gallon tank except every third day for around five calves). How much water for the hay..sorta immaterial, it falls from the sky anyway. We don't irrigate here, and a lot of places don't need to irrigate.

    If it is grass fed, and locally/self processed, you can knock those water requirements way way down from that high figure in order to get a steak to the plate.

    And seeing as how we have a lot of slopes, it makes way more sense to grow turf, that feeds the cattle, than to open it up to massive erosion and try to grow row crops there. It's a conversion principle and economics plus looking at the terrain that dictates the type of farming. Yes, gallon for gallon, you can get more generic food feeding straight veggies to the humans, but it also won't ever be as nutrient dense a food either, no matter which veggie you are talking about. In other words you can't compare a bite of lean beef to a bite of cabbage. Both are good, both take water, but bite for bite the beef just has a lot more nutrients, so is that water really all that wasted? The humans just cannot eat that grass, it must be converted. You can go all the way to nutrient light veggies like spuds, a grown man living entirely on spuds like back during the Irish potato famine was eating 10-14 lbs a day to get enough energy and nutrient requirements to stay barely functional and working (working as in outside hard physical labor working, not diddly bopping around from city apartment to ultra light duty office or retail work, etc).

      There are a lot of tradeoffs and considerations when doing resource analysis.

  • Re:Capitalism !! (Score:3, Informative)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @06:57PM (#32392724) Homepage Journal
    the reply below replied to you actually, in proper manner. for clearing your confusion about stuff you dont know enough about yet, you should refer to the other reply to your above post, and read on social democracy. i wont lecture you on term meaning of socialism and how broad its implications and subsets are. however i will do this :

    the situation in the aforementioned social democrat (socialism is their greater set) countries with regulations and taxes are so that, companies are taxed heavily of their profits, and channelized to whatever is needed by society and their success by the regulations, which causes them to become, in practice, semi-autonomous, self-budgeting, revenue-sharing government branches. it is an intended, planned effect.

    social democracy, was precisely something that was devised to reach ultimate goal of socialism, through this mild method, giving both the society an adaptation and transition period. so far, it has been wildly successful.

    read the below : []

    Social democracy is a political ideology of the centre-left on the classic political spectrum. It is by tradition a form of evolutionary reformist socialism.[1] The Frankfurt Declaration of the Socialist International, attended by many social democratic parties from across the world, committed the adherents to the replacement of capitalism with socialism and committed adherents to oppose Bolshevik communism.[2]

    Social democracy supports gradualism, in the belief that a gradual process of reforming existing capitalist economies in a democratic manner will succeed in creating socialism.[3] It rejects revolutionary forcible imposition of socialism.[3] Its gradualism has resulted in communists and the far left accusing social democracy of not being true socialism and accuse it of accepting the values of capitalist society.[3] Social democracy promotes the creation of economic democracy as a means to secure workers' rights.[1] Social democracy rejects the Marxian principle of dictatorship of the proletariat, claiming that gradualist democratic reforms will improve the rights of the working class.[4]

  • Re:pure water (Score:3, Informative)

    by mschuyler ( 197441 ) on Saturday May 29, 2010 @07:01PM (#32392756) Homepage Journal

    I'm not sure that is 100% true. Coca Cola licenses the formula to be used by local bottling companies who "make" the coke for more or less local distribution. Every major city has a coca cola bottling plant for distribution right there.

  • by johncadengo ( 940343 ) on Sunday May 30, 2010 @03:46AM (#32395170) Homepage

    In India bottled water fraud is widespread. When I traveled there a few years ago, it was far more safe to drink coke than the water, even bottled water. If you've ever seen the movie Slum Dog Millionaire there is a scene where they take used water bottles refill them and glue back the top. I actually had some friends drink such water and get sick. What my friend told me to do was to crush the water bottles after drinking them because there aren't really trash cans or dumps in India. People just throw the trash out on the side of the road, and burn it. So you'll see lots of people walking picking up used water bottles to refill and sell.

If all else fails, immortality can always be assured by spectacular error. -- John Kenneth Galbraith