Landscapes - Fall 2015 - (Page 62)

A CRITIQUE READ BY | LU PAR GEORGE STOCKTON AN OUT-OF-WATER EXPERIENCE book info: Out of Water Design Solutions for Arid Regions By Liat Margolis and Aziza Chaouni Foreword by Herbert Dreiseitl 2015: Birkhauser Verlag GmbH, Basel Hardcover $44.95; E-book $59.95 ISBN: 978-3-03821-006-1 With climate change, dry region issues become a matter of national, social and cultural survival. LACF is proud to have provided seed-funding for this publication. 62 LANDSCAPES PAYSAGES EN_OUT OF WATER is a very wellproduced, clearly written and extensively illustrated book that should be of interest to landscape architects, planners, environmentalists and engineers working in the arid regions of our planet. It focuses upon the spotty ability of arid countries to come to terms with their impending water shortfalls. The authors rightly assert that the lack of appropriate water management systems and practices reflects a failure of sustainable human development and of related design practices. Over and over again, the authors point to one of the main drivers in the water crisis which is overtaking arid regions: decades of reliance on single function engineering for water extraction and utilization, while steadfastly ignoring centuries of accumulated wisdom in sustainable living - wisdom that has been honed throughout dry regions since pre-industrial times. In fact, if there is a criticism of Out of Water, it is the shortage of discussion regarding the many ways water was harvested and utilized by peoples across northern Africa and the Middle East. A MATTER OF SURVIVAL For landscape architects working in arid regions, this book provides an invaluable primer of regional-specific planning and design approaches that go beyond conventional business-as-usual strategies which have only exacerbated the problem. Moreover, with climate change, dry region issues become a matter of national, social and cultural survival. Yemen and Jordan, for example, are running out of water resources and they do not have the financial capability or energy resources for hi-tech stop-gaps like desalinization. Wealthy Middle East countries like Saudi Arabia and the Emirates are 10 to 15 years away from exhausting their ground water reserves and are increasingly dependent on unsustainable energy and water production technologies. Riyadh, a city of nearly six million people, is supplied with desalinated water produced on the Arabian Gulf 500 km away. The plants use either heavy oil or cheap coal to de-sal seawater. It takes roughly one barrel of oil to deliver one barrel of water. The water is pumped uphill to Riyadh where it is used once and then flushed into the desert. New and innovative water-related environmental infrastructure specific to regional conditions is urgently needed. Technologies for capturing already meager and decreasing precipitation should become integral parts of urban infrastructure. Seasonal flooding in arid regions is a precious gift; the water should be harvested instead of being engineered away into the desert. CLOSED LOOP SYSTEM THINKING A close examination of the water cycle of many arid regions shows that there

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Landscapes - Fall 2015

TO BEGIN WITH
WRITERS
AAPQ: 50 ANS DE CREATION
UPFRONT
EXCELLENCE 2015
NATIONAL HONOUR
NATIONAL MERIT
THE REGIONALS
ADJUDICATION
LACF-PRESENTS
GUELPH’S EVOLUTION
BEE HABITAT
LACF FUNDED RESEARCH: A CRITIQUE
THE LAST WORD

Landscapes - Fall 2015

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