A good book can have a profound impact on the reader. Some are so powerful that they can even change lives.
But how about a book that could actually save your life?
Sounds a little far-fetched, I know. But that’s exactly what one group of seriously “outside the box” thinkers have dreamed up.
So what’s the rationale behind this seemingly wacky idea?
A Radical Solution to a Global Problem
When it comes to the planet’s most critical commodity, nothing is more essential than clean water.
Without it, we’d die very quickly – it’s as simple as that.
But many parts of the world suffer from crippling water shortages. Overall, it’s believed that 663 million people don’t have access to safe drinking water.
Around 358 million of those people reside in sub-Saharan Africa alone. And the World Health Organization says 3.4 million people die every year due to health conditions caused by drinking unsanitary water.
But one solution to this serious problem comes in the form of a “drinkable book.”
Now, the book isn’t a real book, of course. But it does provide water that’s safe to drink for millions. How?
Well, its specially treated pAge Drinking Paper not only combines printed information on how and why water should be filtered… but it actually does the job for you!
The “reader” simply tears out a page, puts it in a simple filter holder, and then pours water over it. The silver and copper nanoparticles contained in the paper kill dangerous bacteria and diseases that lurk in the water.
Talk about innovative thinking!
The idea comes from Dr. Theresa Dankovich, a postdoctoral researcher at Carnegie Mellon University, right here in my backyard of Pittsburgh.
Dankovich tested her new-age filter paper on 25 different water sources in five countries. The results were impressive – the pages eliminated 99% of the bacteria present in the water, along with metallic levels that were well above U.S. guidelines for safe drinking water.
Even better… one single sheet of this paper can filter up to 26 gallons of water. It means an entire “book” can supply one person’s water needs for up to four years.
Take a look…
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Dankovich recently presented the results of her field tests to the 250th meeting of the American Chemical Society.
To date, though, her team at Carnegie Mellon has only produced 2,000 sheets of this paper, all by hand.
When I reached out to Dr. Dankovich, she emphasized that the project is still in the development stage and the book isn’t yet for sale.
However, it’s already passed the first two stages with flying colors – in the laboratory and on real water sources.
The next step is to find a commercial, scalable way to mass produce the product – and she’s working with charities WATERisLIFE and iDE to help make that happen.
But like most entrepreneurial tech projects, they require funding to truly get off the ground. These days, that’s much easier due to the popularity of crowdfunding – and there’s an Indiegogo campaign ongoing to help raise funds.
As I write, it’s secured $8,325 of its $30,000 goal, with just 11 days to go, so consider chipping in a few bucks towards this incredible and worthwhile project.
This is one book that I sincerely hope becomes a bestseller.