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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
March 19, 2021 Op-ed: Water sustainability is a new battlegroundSource: Mining Review
Protecting our limited water resources is going to require not only better recycling and reuse, but more effective wastewater management strategies.
Source: World Economic Forum
Growing food in a sustainable, environmentally friendly way – while also producing enough of it – is among the most important challenges facing the U.S. and the world today. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us that food...
March 15, 2021 How Craft Brewers Are Embracing SustainabilitySource: Forbes
So craft brewers are getting creative, implementing unique ways to decrease their use of natural resources. Methods include upcycling used water, taking land stewardship initiatives and recovering carbon dioxide from the...
March 11, 2021 Is this the end of forests as we've known them?Source: The Guardian
Trees lost to drought and wildfires are not returning. Climate change is taking a toll on the world’s forests - and radically changing the environment before our eyes
March 10, 2021 Two major companies announce new AgWater Challenge Commitments to improve water stewardship and sustainable agriculture practices on more than 1 million total acres of agricultural landSource: Yahoo Finance
Two major agricultural giants, representing 12 billion USD in annual revenue, announced new commitments to improve water stewardship as part of the Ceres and World Wildlife Fund (WWF) AgWater Challenge. They include Danone North...
Source: AL Monitor
The project of an Egyptian student consisting of using the Sinai environment for sustainable agriculture with the use of less water may be a solution to Egypt’s water scarcity problem.
March 8, 2021 DuPont Water Solutions And Waterise Collaborate Toward Sustainable Subsea DesalinationSource: Utilities
DuPont (NYSE:DD) hasannounced that it has entered into a collaboration with Waterise to provide seawater reverse osmosis membranes and expertise to the company’s subsea desalination plants.
Sustainability means many things, but one of its unquestionable goals is ensuring the health and longevity of our planet.This mindset is at the core of an all-new, sustainable denim drop by Levi’s®. As the brand that introduced...
February 25, 2021 Project examines how to make 'farm to table' more sustainableSource: Eureka Alert
"We're looking at what it would take to change the food supply system to improve water quality and increase central Iowans' access to fresh and healthy local food, while maintaining or even improving Iowa farmers' incomes."
February 24, 2021 Sustainable but smartly: Tackling security and privacy issues in smart agricultureSource: Techxplore
According to recent estimates, there will be roughly 10 billion people to feed in 2050. Agricultural production will need to increase by almost 56% to guarantee food security globally,
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