The water didn’t look right, didn’t smell right, didn’t taste right. People were breaking out. They had skin rashes, and people had hair falling out.
We’re going to finally regulate and monitor groundwater, and we’re going to keep it all secret.
We have to accept that there isn’t enough water for everyone to do everything they want anymore, if there ever was. We have to accept that all water users, including the environment, deserve a say in how to allocate the limited water we have.
This article originally appeared on Reveal
A decade ago, reports began emerging of a strange occurrence in the Saudi Arabian desert. Ancient desert springs were drying up.
The springs fed the lush oases depicted in the Bible and Quran, and as the water disappeared, these verdant gardens of life were returning to sand.
The water-intensive nature of almond milk, of course, is no secret. By law, food manufacturers have to name ingredients in order of their prevalence in the product. For Califia and other almond milk brands, it starts like this: “filtered water, almonds.” Given that it takes 1.1 gallons of water to grow a single almond in California, where 80 percent of the world’s almonds are produced, drenching the finished product in yet more water seems insane.
In May 2009, a truck rolled through the Sheikh Yasin camp in Mardan, Pakistan’s “city of hospitality,” where thousands of people had fled following one of the country’s military offensives against the Taliban.
If water was a scarce commodity to this refugee community, ice was a luxury. And it was worth fighting for: A single block could refrigerate whatever perishables the displaced had secured for their families.
Scientists keeping tabs on the eastward voyage of radioactive byproducts from the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear-power-station disaster in Japan suggest that radioactivity from the byproducts should peak off the US and Canadian coasts by the end of next year.
Although Detroit sits next to one-fifth of the world’s freshwater supply, earlier this year the city decided to cut the water off from its residents who cannot not afford to pay for it.
Kids in New York City public schools drank water nearly three times more often after dispensers of cool, fresh tap water were conveniently placed near their lunch lines.
Built by American artist Robert Smithson over six days during a drought in 1970, ‘Spiral Jetty’, a 1,500 foot long (460 meter) and 15 feet wide (4.6 meter) counterclockwise coil made of basalt rock and earth, juts from the shore into the pinkish colored waters of Utah’s Great Salt Lake.
Ashokan is one of the 19 reservoirs that supply 1 billion gallons of fresh water to the City of NewYork every day.
Access to safe and affordable water is out of reach for way too many people in the United States.
Imagine that – even for a day – you lose the running water in your home to drink, cook, bathe and flush your toilet. In Detroit it is the everyday reality of thousands of families whose water has been shut off after falling behind in paying their bills.
We do not know how much our current problem derives from the build-up of heat-trapping gasses, but we can take this drought as a stark warning of things to come.
This intersection of poverty and water access brings to mind the “food desert” (an area underserved by grocery stores). Food deserts have created a public health paradox: without healthy food, the poor are more likely to be obese, relying on corner shops stocked with junk food. The difference is that when it comes to water, there is no alternative – fast food and sugary cereal might be the food desert substitute to fresh vegetables and whole grains, but there is no substitute for water.
Shower with Friends will sense your total use of water and then send you an SMS notification to let you know if you are using more or less water than the previous day.
“The very success of a person as a politician is dependent upon resources that come from the people that you give exceptions to” – Michael Machado, farmer and former California State Senator.
After traveling more than 2,000 miles across California, it’s clear that the state’s drought is mired in paradox with decades of water mismanagement and regional fighting. While cities – some of which never installed water meters – struggle to convince its dwellers to conserve, agriculture consumes 80% of California’s water.
The National Climate Assessment summarizes the impacts of climate change on the United States, now and in the future.
A team of more than 300 experts guided by a 60-member Federal Advisory Committee produced the report, which was extensively reviewed by the public and experts, including federal agencies and a panel of the National Academy of Sciences.
“My family is breathing horrible fumes, we can’t enjoy our property and we’re trapped because no one else wants to live here. To protect our homes and our health, we’ve got no choice but to ban fracking.”
“It seems kind of crazy to be asking Californians to be conscious of their water usage at a time when oil companies can apparently use as much as they wish”