A mesmerising and fascinating sight but with the simple purpose of preventing loss of water through evaporation.
California is experiencing one of its most severe droughts on record, and its local municipalities have an astounding strategy to save water: turn their reservoirs into massive, floating ball pits.
During the past couple years, cities across the state have dumped millions of “shade balls” — black, plastic balls weighted down with water — into their reservoirs.
The result is a terrifyingly hypnotic scene: a barreling barrage of black balls that just never seems to end.
The tactic prevents the chlorine in the water (used to disinfect it from pathogens) from reacting with sunlight to become bromate, a suspected carcinogen. It also protects water sources from wildlife and blocks it from the sun to reduce evaporation.
AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes
Los Angeles officials estimated at a news conference that shade balls will save somewhere around 300 million gallons of water each year. Of course, that’s nothing compared with the 13.6 billion…
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