Saturday, March 19, 2011

Fountain of Excess

I fly through Phoenix a lot. Comes with the territory of being a US Airways flyer. I always go for window seats because I am a six-year-old and love looking out the window at stuff. As much as I fly into PHX, I had never noticed something until a few weeks ago.

At first, I didn't know what I was seeing. I kept looking...





Yes. It's a flipping fountain. But, thanks to The Googles and The Internets, I know it is not just any fountain. Apparently, it is the key feature of the Fountain Hills community and was built in 1970. Our friends at Wikipedia say it blasts 7,000 gallons of water every minute through three 600 horsepower pumps and that "ideally" it shoots water 560 feet into the air.

The Washington Monument, by the way, is 555 feet and 5 1/8 inches tall.

Yes, friends, in the middle of the flipping desert, we have built a fountain that can top out higher than a major national landmark.

I barely know where to start here. I should note that it doesn't constantly run at that power. But, really, in a world where the population is going to hit 9 billion by 2050, while our water supply stays the same, perhaps we might not fire 7,000 gallons/minute of it into hot, dry air for a good chunk of it to simply evaporate.

I'm not against evaporation. It makes rain. However, I am also in favor of irrigating local food supplies. And drinking water. Oh... and not paying out the wazoo to do so.

Anyhow, I'm glad we achieved the miracle of water in the middle of the desert. I'm sure, though, that when the settlers first saw the Salt River in Phoenix, their thoughts were "oh thank the lord it's water... it's 115 degrees out here and we need a drink."

It probably wasn't "I know what let's do... fountain!"

2 comments:

Sarie26 said...

It's shit like this - precisely like this - that makes me hate the human race.

delamer said...

Yikes!