John Tonkin, BWJO Editor
Strange how a few words in a book can continue to have a hold on you years after the last page was turned. Dr Jonathan Kaplan was born in South Africa, qualified as a medical doctor, worked in the townships and then left South Africa as he was not comfortable with the government policies of the day. His book “The Dressing Station – A Surgeon’s Chronicle of War and Medicine” held some wise words.
His career included being a ship’s doctor, an air evacuation medic and a surgeon in war torn Eritrea. He remarked that his efforts in attempting to bring life back to the bodies of men, women and children torn apart by high velocity metal and stupidity was made to look small by someone he met who was drilling boreholes! All too often his waking hours (and there were many) were spent treating only a handful of the constant stream of wounded patients. One borehole however, could save 6000 people from certain death from dehydration.
This lesson was brought somewhat closer to home during our recent bout of load shedding. All and sundry complained bitterly about the inconvenience and the damage done to the economy, but we muddled through. Then one day, the water went off. No bathing, showering, washing clothes and dishes, very little cooking and (worst of all!) no tea or coffee. While life didn’t end, we were not far off.
So this type of situation is a minor hiccup - right? Unfortunately not. Rising population levels matched with even faster rising expectations is a hotbed for a demand-exceeding-supply situation. Something has to be done. Like all seemingly intractable problems, the solution is multifaceted. Essentially, cut the waste, use what you have far more efficiently and effectively and try and improve the source of supply.
The Borehole Water Association, as a significant voice of the groundwater industry, has over the past 40 years striven to make a positive contribution to all these aspects of water supply. In this edition of the Journal, we continue this tradition with two educational articles - one on how to protect borehole pump installations from lightning and other sources of damaging power surges, and another on how to prevent system failure due to incorrectly specified pumps. There is also an informative article on water usage licenses for the mining sector.
We're also excited to be featuring an article on some tips and tricks for designing your company website, based largely on our experience of the recent BWA website redesign. We hope to be featuring more general business management articles, particularly for small and medium businesses in the groundwater industry, in future volumes of the Journal.
Then, you can read about all the activity in the groundwater industry in our News section. There's also a report back on the ISS and WRC Report "Parched Prospects", which includes a helpful video summarising the report's findings. In addition to all this, there are some very interesting contributions in our showroom from a range of companies in the groundwater industry.
I hope that you will add to your skills by reading the latest Borehole Water Journal Online.