Friday, March 22, 2013

World Water Day - Imagine a life without water.

Today is World Water Day.

I never take for granted the fact that I have clean drinking water that is accessible to me and there are others in the world that don't.

Water is necessary for life:

We need water to:

  • Grow our vegetables
  • Hydrate our animals and ourselves
  • Keep ourselves clean
  • Sustain the eco balance of the world
  • Cook our food
  • Keep us alive.
I live in a multi-story apartment building and every time they shut off the water I realize how much I take having running water for granted.

I wake up everyday and can brush my teeth with clean water,  then go to the bathroom and flush the toilet and take a hot water shower.
Then I can go into the kitchen and boil an egg in water and wash the dishes after I finish breakfast and then use the water to clean up the kitchen.   I can get water to make tea or coffee or to have ice water and lemon even.  I can water my plants and keep moisture in the air.

All of these things are necessary to live a healthy life and are taken for granted by many people in the world.   And then there are those that don't have these things at their disposal on a daily basis.   

Imagine waking up and not being able to keep yourself properly cleaned and be able to have water on hand to drink when you are thirsty or sick or to cook your food or clean your vegetables.   What if you had to walk for miles to get a little bit of water that you had to make last.   I don't know how I could do that after growing up my whole life with it being like having fresh air.

Water is essential to Food and Sustainability.   We can't survive without it.  Our plants feed our animals which feed our plants which feed us.   It's the cycle of life and Water is the Key to this Cycle.

We need to find ways to make sure that we don't lose what we have and find ways to provide for the people that don't have this necessity.


SOME FACTS:
*worldfoodday website

85% of the world population lives in the driest half of the planet.
783 million people do not have access to clean water and almost 2.5 billion do not have access to adequate sanitation. 
6 to 8 million people die annually from the consequences of disasters and water-related diseases.
Various estimates indicate that, based on business as usual, ~3.5 planets Earth would be needed to sustain a global population achieving the current lifestyle of the average European or North American.
Global population growth projections of 2–3 billion people over the next 40 years, combined with changing diets, result in a predicted increase in food demand of 70% by 2050.
Over half of the world population lives in urban areas, and the number of urban dwellers grows each day. Urban areas, although better served than rural areas, are struggling to keep up with population growth (WHO/UNICEF, 2010).
With expected increases in population, by 2030, food demand is predicted to increase by 50% (70% by 2050) (Bruinsma, 2009), while energy demand from hydropower and other renewable energy resources will rise by 60% (WWAP, 2009). These issues are interconnected – increasing agricultural output, for example, will substantially increase both water and energy consumption, leading to increased competition for water between water-using sectors.

Water availability is expected to decrease in many regions. Yet future global agricultural water consumption alone is estimated to increase by ~19% by 2050, and will be even greater in the absence of any technological progress or policy intervention.
Water for irrigation and food production constitutes one of the greatest pressures on freshwater resources. Agriculture accounts for ~70% of global freshwater withdrawals (up to 90% in some fast-growing economies).
Economic growth and individual wealth are shifting diets from predominantly starch-based to meat and dairy, which require more water. Producing 1 kg of rice, for example, requires ~3,500 L of water, 1 kg of beef ~15,000 L, and a cup of coffee ~140 L (Hoekstra and Chapagain, 2008). This dietary shift is the greatest to impact on water consumption over the past 30 years, and is likely to continue well into the middle of the twenty-first century (FAO, 2006).
About 66% of Africa is arid or semi-arid and more than 300 of the 800 million people in sub-Saharan Africa live in a water-scarce environment – meaning that they have less than 1,000 m3 per capita (NEPAD, 2006).

If you have the power to make a difference and give people water for life then what can be better than that?   I don't have financial or political power but I have the power to share this information with you and hopefully you have the power to share it with someone that has the power to make a change.


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