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Water for Food Conference: Now What?

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By Melinda
Online Team

Solar-powered cameras and underground sensors and drones. Oh my!

WaterforFood2013GlobalConference-SolarCameraThis morning’s session of Cool Tools & Technologies for Water and Agricultural Researchhad me geeking out at the Water for Food Conference. Photographers, computer scientists and engineers are thinking outside of the box when it comes to applying technology in agriculture and the environment. In fact, they are taking these hi-tech gizmos directly to the cornfields and river basins to research.  I’d like to cover these topics in more detail at a later date in order to focus more attention on each individually. But, for today, I want to provide my final thoughts after attending this conference:

We have information. Now what?

Several presenters reported that there is, indeed, a warming trend, which is based on solid, scientific research.  We are faced with complex issues. Scientists can equip us with information, and, as I saw today, some innovative tools. There are many questions, but the implications are that collaborating is better to happen sooner than later. In short, we need to do something with this information. Speaking of doing something…

Do something that matters (to you and everyone else).

Seriously.  Find something you are passionate about, and do it for yourself.  If you don’t care about it, then what’s the point? Then take that “something” and do something good with it! You deserve to be a part of this dialogue, and your passion most likely has a place within it.

Traveling is a part of education—even if it is in your own backyard.

Sure, we are not all going to be world travelers.  But, you can find plenty of opportunities to experience nature and discover some enthusiasm right outside your door.  As I mentioned a few posts ago, part of my desire to learn more was because I had natural disasters knocking on my back porch—last week, in the summer of 2012, and seemingly more frequent than what I can recall while growing up.  I’m not saying that this desire has to be negatively induced.  Start a garden! Put your hands to the soil.  Farmers will tell you that the connection they feel to the ground they tend is quite an amazing venture.

This conference provided me with much value, from the quality of information and people I met to the previews of new technology.

However, I must admit, after three days inside, I was excited to attend an outdoor tour at the Audubon Rowe Sanctuary on the Platte River.

I really don’t want to reach a sad reality in 2050, think back to today and say, “I wish we would have done something back then.”

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