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Water Quality and Quantity Issues, News and Updates
Water, water everywhere --- and not a drop to drink...”
(from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge)
Water – Quality & Quantity – A Very Hot Topic
Updated January 2011
“Demand for water is projected to outstrip supply by a staggering 40 percent by 2030, and an estimated half the world’s population are likely to live in areas of high water stress by the same year” -- so states Paul Dickinson, Executive Chairman of the Carbon Disclosure Project in the CDP Water Disclosure 2010 Global Report. The situation is getting worse rather than getting better. The pressures of over-population, climate change and increased use per capita are all causing water stresses, although unevenly, throughout the globe.
Current impacted areas in the news include the Southwestern and Southeastern regions of the United States; China; India; Ireland; the Middle East region; Australia; and many countries in Africa. The threat has been recognized and throughout the globe and governments, corporations and activists groups are bringing the problem to the forefront and helping to craft and influence both short and long term solutions.
Since this section was first created in 1998, the editors have screened tens of thousands of articles and posted almost 1,000 stories, commentaries and reports. Water – quality and quantity is continuing to be a Hot Topic for AC readers. As many pundits are saying…water is becoming the new carbon.
In 2006 the United Nations World Water Development Report described the state of water on our planet as a “crisis of governance.” While the world appears to have enough fresh water supply today, the issue is one of governance, as in water distribution, management and quality control practices. Water quality appears to be degrading in many areas, our monitoring tells us, and water quantity (supply) is a huge issue in many of the world’s regions.
Due to a number of factors -- mismanagement, limited area resources, and environmental changes, some caused by climate change -- almost one-fifth of the planet’s population still lacks access to safe drinking water and 40 per cent of the world’s population lacks access to basic sanitation. Access to water is further restricted by national and governmental entities that regulate where the water flows, who has access and for what purpose the water is used.
Water is also used as an economic, health and environmental weapon by the “haves” over the “have-nots.” Governments “determine who gets what water, when and how, and decide who has the right to water and related services,” said the report authors. Water availability is also related to a range of issues intimately connected to water, from health and food security to economic development, land use, and the preservation of the natural ecosystems on which the water resources depend.
Water quality is declining in most regions of the Earth. Regional over- population, increased industrialization, absence of proper waste water treatment -- are all contributing to the emerging crisis. Poor water quality is a key cause of poor livelihood and health. An estimated 1.6 million lives (directly or indirectly connected to water quality issues and their related diseases) could be saved each year by providing more access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene to the world’s poorest regions.
Access to water is not only a Third World or emerging nations’ issue -- droughts in the U.S. Southeast and quantity issues in the Southwest and in California have brought conservation, control and distribution issues to the public’s attention in the past few years. Water in the United States is a key factor to residential and commercial development, economic stability and job growth – all issues which effect local and regional communities’ economic well-being. Water in the USA is critical to the health of agriculture and related industries. Corporations are in the spotlight for their use of water – advocates and third party researchers are developing “water footprints” (similar to “carbon footprints”) for leading companies, such as Coca Cola, Nestle and other water-intensive industries and sectors.
The Editors of Accountability Central work to bring the many facets of Water issues -- especially quality and quantity -- into focus with news, commentary and research. Education on the issues, public discussion and rising concern can help to bring about real and positive changes and sensible and fair solutions to the problems at hand. Perhaps this public forum can help in some small way. The Institute maintains a robust focus on water issues and the key players in its subscription Web-accessed knowledge management platform Sustainability HQ – click here for more information:www.sustainabilityhq.com.
Latest on Water - Quality & Quantity
October 7, 2013 More Bad News For Fracking: IPCC Warns Methane Traps More Heat
theenergycollective.com - The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports that methane (CH4) is far more potent a greenhouse gas than we had previously realized. This matters to the fracking debate because methane...
Source: Oil Price.com
The fracking boom has been applauded by many as the saviour of the US, dragging its economy out of recession, and bringing in a new era of oil and gas production that could see the country become energy independent in the coming...
Fracking in America generated 280bn US gallons of toxic waste water last year – enough to flood all of Washington DC beneath a 22ft deep toxic lagoon, a new report out on Thursday found. The report from campaign group Environment...
one.trust.org - Accordingly, Kim said in a June 7 letter replying to the civil society groupsâ concerns that while it is keen to examine any problems with private participation in îWorld Bank waterî projects,...
Think Progress - If we are to avoid catastrophic warming, our natural gas consumption has to peak sometime in the next 10 to 15 years, according to studies by both the Center for American Progress and the îUnion of...
Water World - WASHINGTON, DC, Oct. 2, 2013 -- A new campaign to inform Americans about the value of water and the challenges ... It is estimated that there is one water main break every two minutes in the United States, and that...
October 3, 2013 Fracking linked to radioactive river water in Pa.Source: USA Today
River water in western Pennsylvania has elevated levels of radioactivity, some of it from fluids discharged after natural gas extraction, says a Duke University study today that's likely to stir more controversy over the booming...
October 2, 2013 Water Wars: Egyptians Condemn Ethiopia's Nile Dam Project
National Geographic - "Ethiopia is killing us," taxi driver Ahmed Hossam said, as he picked his way through Cairo's notoriously traffic-clogged streets. "If they build this dam, there will be no Nile. If there's no Nile, then...
Making clean drinking water globally accessible is one of the biggest challenges of this century. Yet a new study by Oxford University contends that this goal is achievable if the key elements of good governance and management...
October 1, 2013 Friction over 'fracking' grows in SouthSource: USA Today
Environmental activists chalked it up as a victory when the University of Tennessee failed this month to receive any bids for a natural gas drilling project on an 8,600-acre publicly owned research forest.
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