Thursday, March 27, 2014

Will Miss #537 - lack of sprinklers

You can't tell, but these were in Okubo in Tokyo along Ome Kaido Avenue. Yeah, flowers pretty much look like flowers everywhere.

California, where I'm currently living, is in the grips of a long drought. This is a unique experience for me as I lived in a place that had what appeared to be five seasons. The fifth one was "the rainy season, of which there actually appeared to be a major and a minor one. Water was rarely in short supply. In fact, I heard one year that the collection tanks in Tokyo were in danger of being so over-full that floods were a possibility.

At any rate, despite the lack of water in California, people seem to be good with watering their lawns on a regular basis. This is somewhat irritating, but not nearly as annoying as the fact that the automatic sprinklers that they use to do so seem to spend as much of their precious liquids on the sidewalks as they do on the grass. I like to walk and it's very, very common to have to side-step sprinkler systems that are sending rivers of water down the streets and threatening to douse passersby.

In Tokyo, I never had to deal with this. Even in areas with artificially maintained greenery (such as the government building that was not too far from my home), they seemed capable of making the water hit the spots it was supposed to and keep it off of the ones it didn't belong in (like the streets and sidewalks). I very much miss the lack of obtrusive and wasteful lawn sprinklers.

4 comments:

  1. Sorry, but speaking as an Australian, if people are using their sprinklers, that's not a drought. That's just "not currently raining". =P

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    1. I've read that the drought situation in CA is strange in that the state and local government officials prioritize lawns and personal use over agriculture. In other words, people water their lawns so that politicians get re-elected while crops whither and food prices go up for the whole country. It's a drought, but it is handled in accord with political concerns rather than environmental ones.

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  2. Yes, Californians are notorious for wasting this previous resource. Homeowners are only one group who do this. Large agribusiness farms waste even more with their sprinklers and excessive irrigation. They also grow water intensive plants when they should focus on growing those which need less/little water. After all, most of the state is actually semi-arid, if not a desert.

    Israel has done much better in designing and using drip irrigation systems. These use substantially less water to grow crops.

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  3. One of the reasons I live apartment living is the lack of lawn. I find it an unnecessary/wasteful expense. Watching the water waste that comes with much desired green lawns sickens me. Probably doesn't help that I recently watched "Blue Gold : World Water Wars"

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