Innovations from the most water-starved continent

By Murray Bourne, 25 Aug 2007

Australia has been in the grip of its worst drought for 100 years.

Some excellent inventions are being developed to reduce water consumption. From the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s New Inventors programme:

Water Fresh

Waterfresh is a mechanical water disinfection system, designed to kill pathogens.

Solar Water Purifier

The Solar Water Purifier uses direct sunlight to convert any source of contaminated water − seawater, bore water, effluent, wine − into drinkable water.

Perpetual Water

The Perpetual Water system is an urban automated grey-water treatment system that makes grey water blue again. It treats shower, bath and laundry water to make it class A recycled water.

But for my money, the most impressive example was the suburban house that has been disconnected from the mains water supply:

Turning off the Mains

10 years ago, sustainability coach Michael Mobbs turned the mains water supply off that was supplying his household water.

Mobbs rightly pointed out that if we wait for governments to do something meaningful about water recycling, nothing will happen. We need to do it ourselves.


Singapore (where I now live) also has water shortage problems. Singapore has developed a water recycling and purification system called NEWater. In theory, it would allow Singapore to be self-sufficient in water, rather than relying on buying water from Malaysia as it has done for decades.

Footnote: See all the water-related inventions from The Inventors.

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