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科学美国人60秒双语科学新闻地球篇:会有足够的水吗?

Lily85 于2013-04-06发布 l 已有人浏览
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美国每天用液压破碎法开采石油或天然气所耗费的水大约有25亿加仑。这些水要么在压裂过程中,要么在处理钻孔时都流失了。不过工业用水与农业用水相比就相形见绌了,后
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Some 2.5 billion gallons of water are used to frack oil or gas wells in the U.S. Every day. Nearly all of that water is lost, either in the fracking or by disposing it down a borehole. And industry's water consumption is dwarfed by agriculture, responsible for more than 80 percent of this country's enormous water use.
美国每天用液压破碎法开采石油或天然气所耗费的水大约有25亿加仑。这些水要么在压裂过程中,要么在处理钻孔时都流失了。不过工业用水与农业用水相比就相形见绌了,后者占全国总用水量的80%以上。

With climate change beginning to affect water supplies, what can be done?
随着气候变化开始影响水供应,我们能做些什么呢?

A panel at the recent Advanced Research Projects Agency for Energy summit attempted to answer that question. In agriculture, it will take both better breeding—for more water efficient crops—and smarter irrigation. Our power plants could send less steam into the sky with hybrid air-and-water cooling systems. And local, state and federal governments could begin to reform an often hidebound water rights system. Not to mention that we'd all better get comfortable with the idea of reusing water over and over again.
近期高级研究计划署能源峰会的讨论小组试着回答了这个问题。在农业中,既要培养更多能高效利用水资源的优良作物品种,也要加强建设智能灌溉。我们的发电厂可以通过采用空气和水混合冷却系统来减少蒸汽的排放量。地方、州和联邦政府可以对墨守成规的用水权进行改革。更别说我们个人要提高节水意识,对循环用水的想法感到更自在。

On the other hand, as a new $1 billion facility rising on the California coast may prove, maybe we just need to increase the water supply. The Poseidon desalination plant aims to turn seawater into hundreds of thousands of gallons of freshwater annually. The only problem is: it's expensive and it requires a lot of energy. And producing energy requires water, which requires energy to clean, which, well, lather, rinse, repeat.
另一方面,正如加州海岸线引进10亿美金的设备所证实的,也许我们需要增加水的供应。波塞冬海水淡化工厂旨在将咸水转化成淡水,每天生产数万加仑的淡水。这种办法唯一的问题在于成本很高且需耗费大量能源。况且生产能源又需要用水,水的净化又需要能源,就这样反反复复,周而复始。

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