Are we running out of freshwater?

Oct 17, 2010

Over the last century freshwater pollution has gradually become a very severe issue. Due to the establishments of factories and coal burning plants which are the ultimate source of what is punishing our clean water supply. The inadequate supply of freshwater has now reached a whole new level and has become a global crisis. Poor countries or regions are having a very difficult time with the health and security of its people. An example of this is the country of Bangladesh which no longer has freshwater as an option while in addition people have started to take drastic measures by murdering one another in order to obtain freshwater. Although the people of Bangladesh are doing whatever they can in order to survive, the lack of freshwater is starting to spread rapidly across many regions.

    Only a tiny fraction of the Earth’s abundant water is available to us as freshwater. According to the Scientific American, out of all of the water on the planet, 97.4% is found in the oceans and is too salty for drinking, irrigation and industry.  Only two hundredths of a percent is available to us as usable groundwater, soil moisture, water vapor, and water that is filtered and used as fresh drinking water. These calculations are frightening but most humans are careless and continue to live as if nothing was occurring.

    As I was reading the New York Times, I noticed that our freshwater is not only inadequate but also toxic. People in Charleston, West Virginia have been warned that drinking the tap water can be very hazardous. Not only are the people unable to drink tap water but are also at risk in bathing in it. Tests have showed that the tap water in Charleston contains very dangerous chemicals which could contribute to cancer and damage the kidneys and the nervous system.  After reading all of these problems with freshwater, I have noticed that mostly the people that are affected know what is going on with our clean water supply. Many people have now started to question: “How can we get digital cable and internet in our homes, but not clean water?" Overall this issue is becoming a widespread and must be apprehended immediately.

    Establishments such as chemical factories and coal burning plants play a very big role in damaging our clean water. In order to slow this rapid spreading issue, the government is now trying to reduce the constructions of additional manufacturing plants. Although it looks quite obvious that the government should have done this a long time ago, each year the world’s population is growing at a rate of eighty million people each year. This means that each year the productivity rate should also be increasing rather than decreasing.

    There can be many things that can be done in order to reduce the waste of the freshwater supply. If people become less ignorant and become aware of the current situation, they can pay attention to the many household steps that can be used to conserve our fresh water supply. They can limit the time they spend watering the lawn, showering, running the garbage disposal, and running faucets. Fixing all leaky faucets can also greatly improve the situation; one drip a second can waste two thousand gallons a year.

Eliminating the use of drain cleaners using recycled products and buying water-efficient plumbing fixtures will have a great positive impact on the conservation of freshwater.

    Although all of these conservation methods are very easy to enact, there is a very smal

l quantity of people who have began to follow and carry out these techniques. In order to slow

down this global problem,more people need to participate in these conservation techniques. If

people were to become more aware of this terrifying situation and start following the basic

principals that I have mentioned, human civilization would last a much longer time. Although if no

steps are implemented towards this problem and present patterns continue two out of every three

persons on Earth will live in water-stressed conditions by the year 2025.