In the late 1950s a Texas town on the Gulf of Mexico was suffering from a devastating, decade-long drought. But while the wells ran dry, the ocean lapped at the town’s shore, taunting the thirsty residents with its endless supply of undrinkable water. Undrinkable, that is, until President John F. Kennedy stepped in to save the day with the promise of science. The evolving technology of desalination wouldn’t just end droughts: it would give us as much water as we wanted. It would allow us to inhabit otherwise uninhabitable places. It would let us make the deserts bloom. But at what cost?Credits
Music courtesy of the Audio Network.Research Notes
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“The MacNeil/Lehrer Report; Drought in the West.” Broadcast on February 11, 1977. National Records and Archives Administration, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (WGBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA, and Washington, DC, accessed March 19, 2019.
“White House Today (1961).” Lake Jackson Historical Museum, 1961. Texas Archive of the Moving Image.
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