Clean Water for Developing Countries

Clean Water for Developing Countries

by John A Dracup

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The main purpose of this book is to assist the reader in choosing the best method for providing clean and safe water in a developing country. Most of the book’s content comes from the knowledge gained from: 

-Fifty-plus years of research and teaching in water resource engineering, hydrology and clean water for developing countries at both the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, Berkeley.

-Thirty-five years as an expert witness on numerous hydrologic and water resource engineering legal cases. 

-Clean water projects that I was involved with in Kenya, Peru, Honduras and Guatemala between 2011 and 2017. 

-Attendance at various courses including ones at the Centre for Affordable Water & Sanitation Technologies (CAWST) in Calgary, Alberta, Canada and at “Potters for Peace” in Dodgeville, Wisconsin.
-My many colleagues and students. 

The sites needing clean water can be diverse, e.g. an individual household, an entire village, a group of villages, a school, a clinic, an orphanage, etc. The focus of this book is to provide the reader with a basic understanding of how to bring clean water supplies to these entities. The optimal approaches will depend on both the Point of Use (POU), which may be large or small, and the state of the water (quantity, turbidity, type and concentration of pathogens/bacteria/viruses present) at the water source. Point of Use (POU) is the location where the water is to be consumed. 

The majority of those impacted by unsafe water live in isolated rural areas of the developing world. Cost, sustainability, cultural differences and acceptance by those who will use the water are all important factors in providing clean drinking water to these people. 

These factors include: 

-Community Involvement. By far, the most successful water enhancements in developing countries are tied to community organizations, particularly among the female population.

-The Source of Water. It could be from groundwater, rainwater harvesting or surface water, such as springs, creeks, rivers, lakes and reservoirs.

-The Quality of the Source Water. The water may have physical, biological and/or chemical pollution.
The Size of the Demand Population. Is it an individual household, a school, an orphanage, a small or large village, or a group of villages? Obviously, this affects the amount/volume of clean water needed, and this affects the methodology to be used. 

-The location of the population to be served. Are they close together or widely dispersed?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781734352412
Publisher: John A. Dracup
Publication date: 01/28/2020
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 302
File size: 19 MB
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About the Author

John Dracup was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. He is a first-generation American, as his parents immigrated from Glasgow, Scotland, in the late 1920s. They settled in Seattle because the weather was similar to rainy Scotland. He holds degrees in civil engineering from the University of Washington, Seattle, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, and the University of California, Berkeley. He taught water resource engineering and hydrology at both the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, Berkeley, for over 50 years. His research was in the areas of the optimization of large scale water resource systems and the impact of climate variability and climate change on hydrologic variables. Professor Dracup is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the American Geophysical Union, among others. In 2001, he was a Senior Fulbright Scholar in Australia. In 2015, the trustees of the Rotary Foundation cited him for his efforts in supplying clean, safe water in developing countries. He has traveled to and developed clean water systems in Peru, Guatemala, Kenya, and Honduras. He lives in Santa Monica, California, with his wife and family.

Table of Contents



1. Safe Source

2. Sediment Removal

3. Filtration

3.1 Biosand Filters

3.2 Membrane Filters

3.3 Ceramic Filters

4. Disinfection

5. Safe Storage 

6. Safe Transport 

7. Choosing the Fresh Water Source 

8. Water Quality

9 Pumps and Energy

10. Sanitation

11. Hygiene

12. Cultural Issues

13. Financial Costs

14. Marketing

15. Sustainability

16. Case Studies

16-1 Agua Munda, LLC 

16-2 AguaClara Cornell University

16-3 Aqua Clara International 

16-4 Engineers without Borders USA

16-5 Potters for Peace

16-6 Rotary International

16-7 Rotary International

16-8 Rotary International

16-9 Rotary Club of Santa Monica, Catholic Relief Services and Azure S.A.

16-10 Ryan’s Well Foundation

16-11 The SkyJuice Foundation Inc. 


16-13 Water and Sanitation Rotary Action Group (WASRAG)


16-15 Water for Cambodia

16-16 Water Mission

17. Resource Guide

Appendix I: A Primer on Hydrology

Appendix II: A Primer on Water Resource Engineering 




About the Author 

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