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"...a market economy is essentially a genetic algorithm for solving resource allocation problems..."
- Charles Stross

Iceberg Water Tub  
  An enormous bag or tub that encloses an iceberg used to supply fresh water.  

In future Los Angeles, water will be supplied by towing huge icebergs enclosed in tubs.

"The iceberg." ...Five hundred billion gallons worth of Antarctic iceberg had been towed into Santa Monica Bay. Los Angeles water had never tasted better; Arizona, San Francisco, and the sea gulls of Mono Lake had never been happier. The berg sat out there in a kind of tub. There were teams of climbers going up two faces, and a dozen Boy Scouts glissading down snow near the bottom. "Romulus Corporation tows the icebergs here..."
From Oath of Fealty, by Jerry Pournelle (w/L. Niven).
Published by Timescape in 1981
Additional resources -

Given that 9/10ths of the volume of an iceberg is underwater, it really is sort of a gigantic baggie.

This is a fascinating variation on an idea described by inventor Barnes Wallis in the 1930's. He suggested using large fabric bags to transport potable water at a fraction of the cost of building and operating ships. Instead, tugs or other such boats could tow enormous bags filled with water. This technology is used today for the movement of oil.

Towing icebergs for fresh water is not an original idea. In 1977, Prince Mohammed al Faisal (a nephew of Saudi Arabia's King Khalid), set up a company, Iceberg Transport International, to try it. Read similar ideas at Towing icebergs (1977 article).

In May of 2006, Thames Water department of London seriously suggested towing icebergs up the Thames river to supply London and the Home Counties supplied with tap water.

“Bringing water around the country by road supply isn’t going to work for eight million people,” Mr Aylard told the meeting. Sea tankers would be the first choice, he said. Using icebergs to help to solve the water shortage would, he accepted, be regarded as “daft” by many people. Thames Water has not established whether icebergs from Greenland or northern Scandinavia would be the more appropriate.
(From Water company bosses plan to tow icebergs up Thames)

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Oath of Fealty
  More Ideas and Technology by Jerry Pournelle (w/L. Niven)
  Tech news articles related to Oath of Fealty
  Tech news articles related to works by Jerry Pournelle (w/L. Niven)

Iceberg Water Tub-related news articles:
  - Iceberg Harvesting Off Newfoundland's Coast

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