Ever notice the droplets of water that collect onto spider webs? So did Peter Trautwein, a volunteer engineer with the German Water Foundation and the creator of a rad new water-harvesting device. The ultra wind-resistant CloudFisher is essentially a plastic net with triangular holes that’s tied across vertical metal frames. The mesh catches water droplets from the air, and the dew consolidates into larger droplets that drip down into troughs and freshwater storage tanks below.
For arid regions like Mount Boutmezguida in Morocco, this kind of fog harvesting can be immensely valuable. Water supplies in the region are often located far from homes and are susceptible to drought. “It can take up to three hours a day to find water. And it’s often women and children who do that,” said Aissa Derhem, Chairman of the NGO overseeing the project in the area.
Over two years of testing, the CloudFisher has demonstrated the ability to harvest 4 to 14 liters of water for each square meter of net, and at a much more affordable cost than tap water in the area. Late last year, the initiative was awarded the Momentum for Change Award from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.