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Geomembrane Liners for Drinking Water

May. 31, 2022

Population growth, increased meat consumption and economic activity are putting tremendous pressure on the world's water resources.

According to the latest data from the World Resources Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based research organization, people in 400 regions of the world are living in "extreme water scarcity.

Fears that water shortages could lead to the displacement of millions of people are a cause of conflict and political instability.


Geomembrane Liners for Drinking Water


Will the planet run out of fresh water?

From Mexico to Chile to the tourist hotspots of Africa, Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, "water stress" (the ratio of water withdrawn from the surface to water available) is reaching alarming levels.

The distribution of the world's water resources is the distribution of the earth's water resources. Terrestrial freshwater reserves account for only 2.53% of the Earth's total water bodies, with solid glaciers accounting for about 68.69% of total freshwater reserves. Distributed in the polar regions, the level of human technology is still very difficult to use. Most of the liquid freshwater is deep groundwater, and there is little development and utilization.

Freshwater resources that can be easily used by humans are river water, freshwater lake water and shallow groundwater. The global annual real effective use of freshwater resources is about 9,000 cubic kilometers.

In terms of the distribution of water resources by continents, Asia has the largest annual runoff, followed by South America, North America, Africa, Europe and Oceania. In terms of per capita runoff, the total global river runoff is about 10,000 cubic meters per person. Among the continents, Oceania has the largest per capita runoff, followed by South America, North America, Africa, Europe and Asia.

According to the World Resources Institute, one third of the world's population - 2.6 billion people - live in countries with "severe water scarcity" and 1.7 billion people in 17 countries live in "water-scarce" areas.

While a dozen countries in the arid Middle East are considered among the world's most water-scarce, the World Resources Institute says India faces serious challenges in water use and management that will affect everything from people's health to economic development. Various aspects.

Pakistan, Eritrea, Turkmenistan and Botswana are also water-scarce countries.


Increasing demand for water

Between 1961 and 2014, global water withdrawals (the amount of fresh water taken from the ground) increased by a factor of 2.5. According to the World Resources Institute, the amount of water needed to irrigate crops has more than doubled over the past half century, with irrigation accounting for about 67 percent of annual water withdrawals.

Industry used three times as much water in 2014 as it did in 1961, and now accounts for 21 percent of total water withdrawals. Meanwhile, domestic water use accounts for 10% of total withdrawals, more than six times the 1961 level.

Only a small percentage of water is used for livestock, and according to a study by the University of Twente in the Netherlands, some of the water used to irrigate crops ends up in livestock, accounting for 12 percent of global irrigation water use. As demand for animal products is expected to increase, dietary changes such as reduced meat intake could help reduce some of the water shortage stress.

According to a 2012 study in the Netherlands, the water footprint of any animal product is larger than that of a crop product with the same nutritional value. The water footprint is the amount of water used by the public behind the consumption of various products or services in their daily lives.


Climate and water resources

Some UN agencies warn that climate change will make water supplies unpredictable in some areas. The World Health Organization says rising temperatures and changing rainfall are expected to reduce crop yields in many developing tropical regions, where food security is already an issue.

According to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, water scarcity in some arid and semi-arid regions will result in the displacement of 240- 700 million people by 2030, based on current trends.

Since 1993, World Water Day on March 22 has been a United Nations observance of the importance of freshwater resources. World Water Day celebrates water and brings awareness to the fact that 2.2 billion people still do not have access to safe drinking water, and is a day of action to address the global water crisis.

So, the above is about the world's water resources. Let's look at what we can do now to conserve water. Reservoirs play an important role in agriculture. They are natural or artificial lakes used for flood control, water storage for irrigation, water supply, power generation, fish farming, etc. Typhoons during the rainy season. Every year, many people suffer from floods, and due to the unpredictability of the climate, reservoirs switch from "flood" mode to "flood" mode when heavy rains come. The more water that is released, the more precipitation the upstream reservoirs can hold back, and the lower the blood pressure in the downstream rivers. Protecting natural reservoirs is an important task, and a large number of artificial reservoirs are being built, because in water-scarce countries, artificial lakes will help regulate the climate.


Geomembrane Liners for Drinking Water


More and more areas are choosing to build artificial lakes with waterproof materials. one of the most popular liners is the PE liner, also known as geomembrane. the PE material is made of polyethylene resin. It is impermeable, waterproof, UV resistant and long-lasting. The impermeable and waterproof function means it is suitable for storing water and preventing water leakage. UV resistance allows it to last a long time in use even when exposed to sunlight. In addition, PE liners made from virgin resin are of high quality standard and typically last 30-50 years. the consistency of the PE liner is virgin resin, carbon resin and other chemical additives.

HDPE geomembranes are available in different thicknesses to suit the type of application. Geomembranes are typically smooth on both the top and bottom surfaces. Special polymeric geomembranes with textured surfaces can also be used in certain situations, such as steep embankments. The impermeable layer at the bottom of aquaculture ponds is made of 0.5mm, 0.75mm, 1.0mm HDPE geomembranes. 1.0mm, 1.5mm, 2.0mm HDPE geomembranes are used in pollution prevention and environmental engineering fields such as landfills and sewage treatment projects. The quality of geomembranes is very demanding.


Geomembranes have the following wide applications.

Municipal environmental protection engineering, waste oil and gas engineering.

Landfill cover (closure), mining heap leach pad.

Pond liners, canal liners, water tank liners, raw water treatment reservoirs and impoundments.

Sewage treatment ponds, secondary containment, etc.


Why are geomembranes so popular in engineering?

Because geomembranes are very stable in both high and low temperatures, from 200 degrees to -70 degrees. It is less likely to melt in hot seasons or some special high temperature conditions, and less likely to break in extremely cold weather. It ensures that the liner is suitable for most conditions. More importantly it is acid and alkali resistant. Some projects like lagoons or landfills require high quality standards as a bottom line, where chemical reactions can occur during use. As with landfills, if used to store medical waste, hazardous liquids or items leaking into the ground would be too dangerous and would have an unpredictable and irreversible impact on the environment. The increasing use of geomembranes in large landfills is a testament to the durability and quality of geomembranes.

Interestingly, geomembranes are also used in the aquaculture industry. Like fish, shrimp and crab farming, we offer different thicknesses to apply to ponds. Typically, 0.5mm, 0.75mm and 1.0mm are more popular in the market. In aquaculture, ponds create a complete ecosystem that can store water for the dry season in dry areas, in addition to collecting water for aquaculture. Many African countries are buying geomembranes to build ponds for water storage and aquaculture, which also promotes economic development and will benefit the environment on the other hand. The PE liner is more cost-effective compared to industrial development.Depending on the global distribution of water resources, the use of geomembranes to build lakes or reservoirs can be beneficial to both the environment and the economy. Whether it is a small pond for agricultural irrigation or a large drinking water reservoir near a residential area, PE geomembranes are becoming more and more popular for environmental construction projects.