mardi 26 mars 2019

Manneken Pis no longer peeing water down the drain

Famed Belgian statue wasted 1,000 to 2,500 litres of fresh clean drinking water each day
Daniel Boffey in Brussels (The Guardian)

Brussels’ Manneken Pis statue now has a special channel installed to reuse the water it discharges.
For four centuries the celebrated Manneken Pis – the “peeing boy” in the local Dutch dialect – has embodied the laissez-faire culture of the Belgians.
But, to the surprise of officials in the city of Brussels, it has emerged that the bronze statue had been weeing fresh clean drinking water – 1,000 to 2,500 litres of it a day, sufficient for the use of 10 households – directly into the city’s sewers.
The discovery was made by Régis Callens, an energy technician, after a meter was installed in the 61cm (24in) statue.
“We thought it was a closed circuit and that he wasn’t consuming anything,” Callens told La Dernière Heure. “Since the counter for Manneken Pis is just one out of 350 or 400, nobody paid much attention.”
This week, a channel was constructed to gather the water being discharged by the Manneken Pis to redirect it back to the statue.
At a later date, a permanent circuit will be fitted in keeping with the fountain’s location on a cobbled street close to the Grand Place in the medieval centre of the Belgian capital. The Manneken Pis is the work of the renowned baroque sculptor Jérôme Duquesnoy.
Brussels city commune’s first alderman, Benoît Hellings, said: “We can be proud to say that, for the first time in 400 years, Manneken Pis is not peeing out fresh drinking water. The municipality is now intent on inspecting all the centrally located fountains to avoid similar waste.”
He added: “We will also be improving the monitoring of installations in schools and sports centres. We should be setting an example, and encouraging everyone in Brussels to pay attention to their water consumption.”
The Manneken Pis, which attracts tourists in their thousands, is a copy of the 1619 original, which is in the nearby city museum.
The cherubic statue’s provenance is disputed. One school of thought is that it refers to the legend that troops loyal to Duke Godfrey III of Leuven put the then two-year-old nobleman in a basket in a tree, from where he urinated on enemy soldiers.
A 14th-century story suggests it was a tribute to a local boy named Julianske who had saved the city by urinating on a burning fuse lit by enemies trying to blow up its defensive walls.
The diminutive statue is dressed in clothes 130 times a year, and has more than 1,000 costumes. An American guidebook recently caused some raised eyebrows in Brussels when it named the Mannekin Pis as one of the world’s 45 most overrated tourist attractions.


Si vous n'avez pas compris à la  première lecture, retenez que Manneken Pis urine plus de deux mille litre de bonne eau potable par jour qui part au caniveau. Non; s'il pisse dru en effet, il n'urine pas en boucle. Mais ça va changer. Il faut lire le Guardian pour enfin prendre conscience de ce gaspillage idiot.

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