Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Water Is Life

It's been a while since I've posted here, so you're probably not reading this right now. However here is a link to a blog that I came across, dedicated to all things water. The human population of this planet will soon have outgrown the freshwater resources avaialable to sustain it. When that happens, as the header to the blog states, it will be the "oil of the 21st century."

There are a lot of alarm bells in this blog, but it also contains good information about the need for us to live more sustainably within our water supplies.

The US is currently engaged in a war to enable us to control more of the world's oil supply. In the future, wars will potentially rage over the water supply. The time for strong leadership to come forward in this country to fight our oil dependence, and to fight climate change, has long since passed without any action (apologies to Al Gore and Jimmy Carter, of course). This is because those who fund the political campaigns are well entrenched in an oil economy. Perhaps when somebody faces facts over peak oil and climate change, they will also face facts over water supply, and try to protect our resources.

I have my doubts, however. Already the water supply in third world countries has started to become privatized (i.e., has become the "property" of major corporations like Bechtel). When governments try to control somebody else's "property," conservatives get their undies in a bunch. Privatization is also an issue in this country. I live in a state where a major water bottler, Poland Spring, continues to expand its pumping operations. It does this without paying a significant tax to the people of the state, although the citizens of the state are required to protect the water supply from pollution. It's not an issue at the moment, because there is ample water in Maine's aquifers. It will be a problem in the future, however, as Poland Spring pumps out more water and ships it out of state.

The government needs to take control of the water supplies before we reach a crisis stage. This control should include regulation of bottled water pumping. It should also include the promotion and perhaps regulation of irrigation systems, requiring that sound farming practices be followed in order to preserve the water that is supplied by mother nature. It's the right thing to do, and it should be done before we have to start killing people over the issue.


Blogger PeakEngineer said...

Good thoughts -- water supplies are rapidly reaching the crisis stage, even in "developed" areas like the U.S. west. When I was living in California just two years ago, water issues were on the front page every other day -- agriculture out there (even in the desert) is much heavier than most people realize. Combine water concerns with Peak Oil and all the foodborne illness scares we've had recently and you can see how lack of diversity in agriculture is leading us into disaster.

10:34 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

Thanks for the comments, peak. Good work at your blog as well.

11:33 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home