I had heard a while ago about the development of mist nets to collect rain water in places that was absent of drinking water. Probably in one of those other innovation blogs I read so religiously. A quick You-Tube search found a 2012 video on nets in Peru. And judging by the number of other references, this is not a new innovation (they even have these great promo shots available online), even though it is a pretty cool one.
Anyway, I was writing a WASH proposal recently and in researching current practice by Laos-based organisations, I found that Child Fund have trialled these mist nets up in the mountains of Laos. So I watched their video and was impressed with the alleged results of 18 litres of water in a night. I noticed that this video was completed a while ago, so I will endeavour to ask them about the results since then. It seems their nets were much smaller than the Peru nets and others I have found online, which was interesting. I’m not sure why the Laos nets were so small. Surely scaling it up is not the issue, nor trialling if it has existed for so long.
As much as this tech is clearly site specific, I like that too. Why not have location specific low-tech developments? Misty mountains may be few and far between in hot deserts but in many other tropical countries with elevation beyond a zip-line, they are frequent enough for this innovation to be fairly useful, especially if it is low cost, made from local materials and can be maintained. If you have ever seen the hill-tops that many people live on in remoter locations, you would appreciate the awesomeness of collecting night moisture, as opposed to walking down and up steep hills.
I was also interested in the global solution-generation approach that Child Fund used (mentioned in the video). I have experience with something similar a few years back and it was less successful than I had hoped. But it depends on how wide it is used and who is connecting too I imagine. I think I might look at a future blog-post for this topic.
In the meantime, enjoy the video of night-moisture aggregation. And let me know what you think about it.