Fresh drinkable water is running out all around the world. Like clean air, water is finite and will not be usable if its polluted beyond a certain toxicity. It’s also just been removed from areas where it use to be plentiful — the water table, for example. This article will be open-ended and add to the knowledge on the subject of dwindling water supplies and the push for privatization by many corporations.
Act Now, Urges Study, or Planet Faces 10,000+ Years of Climate Doom
“The next few decades offer a brief window of opportunity to minimize large-scale and potentially catastrophic climate change that will extend longer than the entire history of human civilization thus far.”
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4 Billion People at Risk as ‘Water Table Dropping All Over the World’
Global scarcity of key life source far worse than thought, new study finds
A new analysis reveals that global water scarcity is a far greater problem than previously thought, affecting 4 billion people—two-thirds of the world’s population—and will be “one of the most difficult and important challenges of this century.”
Previous analyses looked at water scarcity at an annual scale, and had found that water scarcity affected between 1.7 and 3.1 billion people. The new study, published Friday in the journal Science Advances, assessed water scarcity on a monthly basis, more fully capturing the specific times of year when it could be an issue.
“Water scarcity has become a global problem affecting us all,” stated study co-author Arjen Hoekstra, a professor of water management at the University of Twente in the Netherlands.
The study found that almost half of the 4 billion affected by severe water scarcity for a month or more are in India and China. Millions of others affected live in Bangladesh, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Mexico.
The United States is far from immune to the problem, with 130 million people affected by water scarcity for at least one month a year, mostly in the states of Texas, California, and Florida. And among the rivers the study notes that are fully or nearly depleted before reaching their end is the Colorado River in the West.
There are also half a billion people who face severe water scarcity year round, the analysis found.
Direct victims of the overconsumption of water resources are the users themselves, who increasingly suffer from water shortages during droughts, resulting in reduced harvests and loss of income for farmers, threatening the livelihoods of whole communities. Businesses depending on water in their operations or supply chain also face increasing risks of water shortages. Other effects include biodiversity losses, low flows hampering navigation, land subsidence, and salinization of soils and groundwater resources.
The study concludes that “[m]eeting humanity’s increasing demand for freshwater and protecting ecosystems at the same time. . . will be one of the most difficult and important challenges of this century.”
The new publication follows a pair of NASA studies led by researchers from the University of California Irvine that showed that the impacts of global warming along with growing demand has caused the world’s water supply to drop to dangerous levels.
“The water table is dropping all over the world,” Jay Famiglietti, senior water scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said at the time. “There’s not an infinite supply of water.”
“We need to get our heads together on how we manage groundwater,” Famiglietti added, “because we’re running out of it.”
The Privatization of Water: Nestlé Denies that Water is a Fundamental Human Right
The current Chairman and former CEO of Nestlé, the largest producer of food products in the world, believes that the answer to global water issues is privatization. This statement is on record from the wonderful company that has peddled junk food in the Amazon, has invested money to thwart the labeling of GMO-filled products, has a disturbing health and ethics record for its infant formula, and has deployed a cyber army to monitor Internet criticism and shape discussions in social media.
This is apparently the company we should trust to manage our water, despite the record of large bottling companies like Nestlé having a track record of creating shortages:
Large multinational beverage companies are usually given water-well privileges (and even tax breaks) over citizens because they create jobs, which is apparently more important to the local governments than water rights to other taxpaying citizens. These companies such as Coca Cola and Nestlé (which bottles suburban Michigan well-water and calls it Poland Spring) suck up millions of gallons of water, leaving the public to suffer with any shortages. (source)
But Chairman, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, believes that “access to water is not a public right.” Nor is it a human right. So if privatization is the answer, is this the company in which the public should place its trust?
In the small Pakistani community of Bhati Dilwan, a former village councilor says children are being sickened by filthy water. Who’s to blame? He says it’s bottled water-maker Nestlé, which dug a deep well that is depriving locals of potable water. “The water is not only very dirty, but the water level sank from 100 to 300 to 400 feet,” Dilwan says. (source)
Why? Because if the community had fresh water piped in, it would deprive Nestlé of its lucrative market in water bottled under the Pure Life brand.
In the subtitled video below, from several years back, Brabeck discusses his views on water, as well as some interesting comments concerning his view of Nature — that it is “pitiless” — and, of course, the obligatory statement that organic food is bad and GM is great. In fact, according to Brabeck, you are essentially an extremist to hold views opposite to his own. His statements are important to review as we continue to see the world around us become reshaped into a more mechanized environment in order to stave off that pitiless Nature to which he refers.
The conclusion to this segment is perhaps the most revealing about Brabeck’s worldview, as he highlights a clip of one of his factory operations. Evidently, the savior-like role of the Nestlé Group in ensuring the health of the global population should be graciously welcomed. Are you convinced?