A Peruvian billboard has produced 15,000 litres of drinking water from the surrounding air
Clearly, one of the coolest aspects of TV's Mad Men is the way the razor-sharp suited adverting execs can saunter into their offices and pour a cocktail from their own well-stocked drinks cabinet.
So the fuss HR kicked up when The Tank tried to shake up highballs at our desk came as quite as a surprise. "But it's for team morale!" we cried, before reminding the burly security staff escorting us from the premises that they were our "beshst mate" and that, while we don't say it much, we "honestly love you man". Well, that was until they snatched the vermouth we'd stashed by the tea caddy.
Fortunately, the guys at outdoor advertising company Clear Channel International are at bit more sophisticated at mixing work and drinking: they've built a billboard that's generated 15,000 litres of water from humidity in the air since it was installed at a Peruvian village six months ago.
The $32,600 billboard at Bujama was developed with academics and other media agencies. It uses a panel that traps and extracts water vapour from the air using a condenser, storing the water in tanks before it is filtered and flows down a pipe to a tap at the bottom of the structure. It provides an average of 96 litres of drinking water each day to Bujama residents, many of whom do not have access to a clean water supply, and also helps tackle the issue of plastic waste from bottled water.
"This campaign showcases the true potential of outdoor advertising," said Aris de Juan, regional president of Clear Channel Latin America, who earlier that day had gone to work on an egg, bought a Mars bar to help him work, rest and play, and taught a gorilla to play the drums.
"Through exceptional creativity and use of technology, Clear Channel Peru and its partners have achieved an extraordinary social outcome," he added to a snap of burgundy braces.
Yet despite this success story, The Tank's suggestion to set up a similar device at a nearby distillery to capture whisky fumes was strangely rejected. Still, The Man can't stand in the way of progress –or drinking in the afternoon – forever.
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