SJ WAVE - Water Solution Which Makes a Difference
Demand for water grows as global population grows; and this is even intensified with global warming brought about by a number of factors that can be attributed to man’s actions and disregard for nature. While most of us enjoy the luxury of clean drinking water; unfortunately, people in developing countries don’t even have access to safe drinking water; and 80% of all diseases in developing countries are water-borne.
So you might see water everywhere, and think there’s more than enough water. But in reality, water that’s available may not always be clean enough for your household use, personal hygiene, and most importantly, drinking.
Seventy-five percent of the earth’s surface is covered with water. However, 97% is salt water, leaving us with just less than 3% freshwater, most of which, unfortunately is trapped in glaciers that are too far away from where people can have access. And with less than 1% freshwater to supply global consumption of 10 billion tons daily, you might ask, “Is there enough water for everyone?”. Well, United Nation’s projections of water scarcity in 30% of the world’s population by 2025 might just happen if we do not act now and conserve water.
There will be about 1 billion more mouths to feed worldwide by 2025 and global agriculture alone will require another 1 trillion cubic meters of water per year (equal to the annual flow of 20 Niles or 100 Colorado Rivers).
What Causes Global Water Crisis?
1. Climate change brought about by deforestation that intensifies heat in affected areas, droughts, and rising sea levels that are salinating freshwater sources.
2. Natural Disasters like floods can destroy or contaminate clean water sources
3. War and conflict destroy water sources and leverage lack of clean drinking water and hunger as a weapon of war
4. Lack of wastewater treatment facilities to make available water safe to drink. We may see water everywhere but if it’s safe to drink is another story.
5. Water wastage from leaking faucets, unnecessary and excessive use of tap water, and disposing of unconsumed clean drinking water may all seem like minor inconveniences but when they add up, they can actually supply a region without access to clean drinking water.
6. Lack of infrastructure to conserve and treat water in some countries takes for granted available water sources that can supply the population
7. Forced migration and refugee crisis puts pressure and unexpected increase in consumption of clean drinking water.
According to the U.S.Intelligence Community Assessment of Global Water Security, by 2030 humanity’s “annual global water requirements” will exceed “current sustainable water supplies” by 40%.
Even with the 1% fresh water that’s available for drinking, we can still make clean water available for everyone if each and every one of us make an extra effort to conserve clean water and lessen our carbon footprint by avoiding unnecessary consumption of water, fixing leaks and broken pipes; and investing in gray water recycling and rainwater harvesting systems for household use. Install a reliable water filtration system and always keep water test kits handy to check on the quality of your water regularly.
Make it a habit to bring your own water bottle to work, school or just about anywhere. Go green by ditching plastic bottles and getting one of those keep warm or cold stainless steel bottles. Just imagine the amount of savings you can make by bringing your own water and not buying water in plastic bottles from convenience stores every time you’re out. This way also, you don’t miss out on hydrating yourself throughout the day.
On a bigger scale, countries must build more reservoirs and wastewater treatment facilities.
Remember, every time you make a conscious effort to conserve water, you alleviate the plight of those living in water-scarce areas and help conserve water for the future.