The Critical Issue of Water Security
Posted on Water Efficiency October 5, 2018 by Vittorio
Roughly 70% of the earth’s surface is covered with water. Yet less than 3% is freshwater and not all of that is accessible for use. While climate change receives ongoing attention, the risk of water shortage is severe enough to deserve our focus. Here’s why.
A small amount of water available for use
Even though the earth is covered with more water than dry land, the fact remains that only a small portion of that is usable. Most freshwater is frozen in glaciers or found deep underground, making it difficult and sometimes impossible to access. In fact, accessible surface freshwater makes up only 0.3% of the earth’s total water supply. Water security ensures that this water is kept clean and safe and is available for everyone’s use.
Water scarcity is already a crisis in many parts of the globe with more than 1.2 billion people lacking access to clean water and 2.7 billion people unable to get enough water for at least one month per year. Inadequate sanitation also leads to poor water quality, exposing 2.4 billion people to waterbourne diseases like cholera.
Climate change, pollution, overconsumption and inefficiencies all contribute to the shortage of available clean water but there are ways to combat water scarcity.
This is an option in some regions for individual building use. Like other sources of water, however, it is weather-dependent and a drought can hamper efforts.
Desalination offers a solution to areas with access to salt water, like coastal regions. There are multiple methods of desalination including thermal desalination and reverse osmosis. These methods consume more energy and are currently more expensive than drawing water from existing freshwater sources. However, as technology advances, the costs are expected to drop, making it more viable for regions without easy access to freshwater.
By far the simplest way to reduce the risk of water shortage is to conserve our existing water supply. Prevent wastage from leaks and overconsumption to keep water available for as long as possible and reduce the likelihood of a severe water crisis.
Be a part of the solution by ensuring your building or business uses less water. Enolgas provides the technology to assist you with your conservation efforts so you can be part of the solution.