The Anonymous Widower

Large Hydropower Dams ‘Not Sustainable’ In The Developing World

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the first four paragraphs.

A new study says that many large scale hydropower projects in Europe and the US have been disastrous for the environment.

Dozens of these dams are being removed every year, with many considered dangerous and uneconomic.

But the authors fear that the unsustainable nature of these projects has not been recognised in the developing world.

Thousands of new dams are now being planned for rivers in Africa and Asia.

I think the report has a sound basis and we should think much deeper before we build a large dam.

Storing energy and preventing of floods are probably good reasons, whereas others are not, considering, that solar and wind power are becoming more affordable.

November 6, 2018 Posted by | World | , , , , | Leave a comment

Free Water At Ipswich Station

I hope this is the shape of things to come.

Greater Anglia give more details on this page on their web site.



July 9, 2018 Posted by | Food, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Where The Queen Gets Her Energy

Yesterday’s edition of Countryfile on BBC1, was entitled Royal Special: Windsor.

In the program, they shows how Windsor Castle and the surrounding estate, use an Archimedes screw in the River Thames to generate electricity.

I found this video on the Internet.

There is also this document on the Internet.

It may look crazy, but after reading the document, it would appear to be cost effective.

This Google Map gives aerial view of the weir and the installed screws.

The two screws are installed in two sections of the weir at the right end.

It may look crazy, but after reading the document, it would appear to be cost effective.

  • At peak flow the two units generate a total of 320kW/hour.
  • There is a six year return on investment.
  • The design life is fifteen years..
  • The owner of the generators has a forty year lease on the site.

I suspect, we could see more units like this!


May 28, 2018 Posted by | World | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Personalised Water From South Western Railway

I was at Waterloo station this morning and the new operator; South Western Railway, was giving out free water.

The postcode on the water is HR1 3EY, which suggests the water came from Berrington Water.



August 20, 2017 Posted by | Transport | , | Leave a comment

Old Ford Water Recycling Plant

This plant just off the Greenway takes raw sewage from the Northern Outfall Sewer and converts it into clear water for non-potable purposes on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

I visited it during Open House 2016.

We need more plants like this, to make better use of the water we use.

October 30, 2016 Posted by | Sport, World | , , , | 1 Comment

I’ve Now Got A Back Garden!

On BBC Breakfast this morning, the weather is coming from Woodberry Wetlands, which is London’s newest Nature Reserve, that opens to the public today, after being opened by Sir David Attenborough yesterday.

This Google Map shows the area.

Woodberry Wetlands

Woodberry Wetlands

One entrance is on the road between the two reservoirs and I think there is a second one by the Castle.

The Castle Climbing Centre

To get there, I just walk across the road by my house and get a 141 bus to the castle. It takes me about ten minutes.

How many readers of this blog realised that North London had such an impressive castle?

It was built to keep Tottenham and Arsenal supporters apart. Tottenham is to the North-East and Arsenal is to the South-West.

This morning, I visited Woodberry Wetlands.

I walked across from where the 141 bus dropped me by the Castle along the New River Walk.

It was crowded, as would be expected on the first day.

One thing that surprised me was that I saw a fox in broad daylight, strutting about as cool as you like.

I think it will turn out to be a popular attraction, but I think that transport bus, bicycle and walking access should be improved.

  • Probably the easiest way to go is to walk from Manor House station. Some signs showing the shortest walking route would help.
  • The maps on the web site need updating with buses from both entrances.
  • Bicycles were everywhere and there needs to be better storage.
  • A bus running between the reservoirs would certainly help.

It is the sort of attraction, that would benefit from some Boris bike stations.

  • Manor House station
  • Finsbury Park station
  • The Castle
  • The entrances to the attraction.

The first two would also serve Finsbury Park.



May 1, 2016 Posted by | World | , , , | 3 Comments

Museum de Cruquius

The Museum de Cruquius is just up the road from The Hague near Haarlem, although our journey up wasn’t the easiest, because the motorway was closed.

It is well worth a visit as it shows a tremendous amount about how the Dutch have kept water at bay.

The enormous steam engine, which sadly doesn’t work, was actually built in Cornwall.

When I see a museum and engine like this, I do think it sad that London’s massive sewage engines at Crossness were just filled with sand and abandoned in the 1960s.

Both sites incidentally, are about the same age!

October 10, 2015 Posted by | World | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where’s The 33cl. Bottles?

I generally carry a 33cl. bottle of water in my shoulder bag, as this is the smallest size I can buy that is useful. I should say that I don’t believe in carrying excess weight either on, in or about my body. It’s usually Evian, as that is the only small one readily available. So I was surprised to see this promotional display in Sainsbury didn’t feature the small bottle.

Evian Promotion In Sainsburys

Evian Promotion In Sainsburys

I would have thought that in this hot weather, a promotion based on small bottles would have been a good idea.

At least I can buy small bottles in dozens in Waitrose and probably other places, whereas in Europe, there was nothing smaller than the half litre anywhere.

July 4, 2015 Posted by | Food, World | , | Leave a comment

Where Are The 33cL Water Bottles?

In the UK, I generally carry a small bottle of water. Usually, it’s a 33cL Evian or if I’ve been on a train a 33cL Harrogate.

As the pictures show, these bottles are smaller than the 50cL ones that you have to use on the Continent. On my recent trip, I never managed to find a smaller bottle.

I prefer the smaller bottles, as there is less to carry. And they fit my jacket pocket!

I would have thought that there might be an economic advantage for both consumers and retailers in the smaller bottle. Not knowing the costs of production, I can’t do a full calculation.

June 18, 2015 Posted by | Food, World | , | 2 Comments

Fighting The Algae

I walked through the New River Walk in Islington this morning and the Council were doing their best to fight the algae.

The theory is if you put bales of barley straw in water infected with the algae, it helps to combat it.

They don’t seem to be having much success, but then I didn’t when I tried it years ago in one of my ponds.

May 25, 2015 Posted by | World | , , , | Leave a comment