WATER – A PRECIOUS AND LIMITED RESOURCE
Water quenches our thirst, it keeps us clean and healthy, it generates energy, our eco systems depend on it and it is used for the manufacturing of millions of things we use and consume on a daily basis. Water is essential to our survival.
On March 22nd we celebrated World Water Day. The theme for World Water Day 2015 is Water and Sustainable Development. Living in British Columbia surrounded by lakes and rivers it may seem we have an abundant supply of water, when in fact, it is a precious and limited resource. As the world population grows so does the global demand for food and water. Here’s some perspective: Canada has about 7% of the world’s renewable freshwater, which makes it the third-largest water supply in the world. We may think we have an endless supply, but the reality is our supply of clean, accessible water is limited.
Take this into consideration: 70% of the worlds water is used for agriculture, 160 litres of water is used to produce 1 large banana, 1260 litres of water goes into 1 margherita pizza, 530 litres to produce 1 kg of ketchup, 74 litres to make a 250ml glass of beer. Meanwhile 30% of food produced world wide is wasted or lost every year. If we reduce food loss and waste globally by 50%, we could save 1350 cubic km of water a year.
Consider this: 1.2 billion people (almost 1/5th of the world’s population) live in areas of physical water scarcity and 500 million are approaching this situation. 1.6 billion people (almost 1/4 of the world’s population) face economic water shortage (countries lacking the necessary infrastructure to take water from rivers and aquifers). By 2025, 1.8 billion people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity, and 2/3rds of the world’s population could be living under water stressed conditions. Bottom line…we have to stop wasting water and start treating it like the precious and limited resource it is. There are many small steps we can take to help the big picture and save our planet and everyone living in it!
Stay tuned for part 2: Simple ways to save water.
Sources and more info:
Environment Canada – Water Wise https://www.ec.gc.ca/eau-water/default.asp?lang=En&n=F25C70EC-1
UN Water – World Water Day 2015 http://www.unwater.org/worldwaterday/home/en/
Home Water Works – Clothes Washer http://www.home-water-works.org/indoor-use/clothes-washer
Star.com – What’s your water footprint? http://www.thestar.com/life/2012/03/22/world_water_day_whats_your_water_footprint.html
Eco Urbia Network http://www.ecourbia.org/water
Canada Water Week http://canadawaterweek.com/