playlist

Talks on water

Dive into these talks about water and humanity’s relationship with this life-sustaining liquid.

  1. 8:46
    Fahad Al-Attiya A country with no water

    Imagine a country with abundant power — oil and gas, sunshine, wind (and money) — but missing one key essential for life: water. Infrastructure engineer Fahad Al-Attiya talks about the unexpected ways that the small Middle Eastern nation of Qatar creates its water supply.

  2. 5:39
    Aziza Chaouni How I brought a river, and my city, back to life

    The Fez River winds through the medina of Fez, Morocco—a mazelike medieval city that's a World Heritage site. Once considered the "soul" of this celebrated city, the river succumbed to sewage and pollution, and in the 1950s was covered over bit by bit until nothing remained. TED Fellow Aziza Chaouni recounts her 20 year effort to restore this river to its former glory, and to transform her city in the process.

  3. 8:46
    Rob Harmon How to keep rivers and streams flowing

    With streams and rivers drying up because of over-usage, Rob Harmon talks about a clever market mechanism to bring back the water. Farmers and beer companies find their fates intertwined in the century-old tale of Prickly Pear Creek.

  4. 3:37
    Sonaar Luthra Meet the Water Canary

    After a crisis, how can we tell if water is safe to drink? Current tests are slow and complex, and the delay can be deadly, as in the cholera outbreak after Haiti's earthquake in 2010. TED Fellow Sonaar Luthra previews his design for a simple tool that quickly tests water for safety — the Water Canary.

  5. 17:14
    Anupam Mishra The ancient ingenuity of water harvesting

    With wisdom and wit, Anupam Mishra talks about the amazing feats of engineering built centuries ago by the people of India's Golden Desert to harvest water. These ancient aqueducts and stepwells are still used today — and are often superior to modern water megaprojects.

  6. 9:31
    Michael Pritchard How to make filthy water drinkable

    Too much of the world lacks access to clean drinking water. Engineer Michael Pritchard did something about it — inventing the portable Lifesaver filter, which can make the most revolting water drinkable in seconds. An amazing demo from TEDGlobal 2009.

  7. 13:37
    David Sedlak 4 ways we can avoid a catastrophic drought

    As the world's climate patterns continue to shift unpredictably, places where drinking water was once abundant may soon find reservoirs dry and groundwater aquifers depleted. In this talk, civil and environmental engineer David Sedlak shares four practical solutions to the ongoing urban water crisis. His goal: to shift our water supply towards new, local sources of water and create a system that is capable of withstanding any of the challenges climate change may throw at us in the coming years.