A new United Nations report calls for a shift away from human-made water infrastructure and towards nature-based irrigation solutions in order to avoid widespread water shortages around the world by 2050.
WHAT BULLSHIT! Gloss over population growth as though it’s inevitable, don’t mention that the root cause of the current problem is existing GROSS overpopulation, and not even mention that the only viable long-term solution for a healthy planet is to lower the human birth rate significantly? Our failure to address overpopulation humanely is forcing Mother Nature to address it inhumanely, and things are going to get a LOT worse before they start getting better.
Rex Tillerson’s accurate assessment of Tweetle-Dumb applies equally well to Ms. Conley —
She’s an F***ing Moron!!
Before you toss, note the documentation and ask why its not covered.
note the 2017 weather patterns and today’s continental patterns
order out of chaos
snap to attention… sir, yes sir
Of course as the value of water increases the greedy among us seek to corner the market and get rich – it’s a matter of supply and demand. And increasing demand is driven in large part by an increasing population that not only needs water for drinking, cooking and bathing, etc., but also wants products that require huge amounts of water to produce — not just water-intensive food products but lots of other things. Ethanol for fuel that’s produced from water-thirsty corn is just one egregious example.
We’re just not very good at making infrastructure, and even less good at maintaining it (see “Central Arizona Project” for example).
I remember this quote from one of two fictional Native Americans, from an otherwise forgettable sci-fi/horror novel:
“They’ll come up here and strangle us all for spit before there’s a dry swimming pool in Phoenix.”
The Annhiliation of Mental Colonization
“One of the saddest lessons of history is this:If we’ve been bamboozled long enough,
we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over, you almost never get it back.”
— Carl Sagan
ClimateViewer TV with Jim Lee
In the area where the Athabasca Tarsands being mined for oil, the ecosystem that is being destroyed is one of fens and marshes and bogs, all of which took thousands of years to evolve. These wetlands are the most important constituents of a clean and reliable freshwater supply.
The Industry refers to this ecosystem as “Overburden” and all of it is being removed to get at the tarsands underneath.
The Government of Alberta has leased these lands under the provision that the Mining companies restore the natural ecosystem after they are finished.
Tarsands mining started around 1966. Since that time some .2 percent of land has been restored according to the Governmnet of Alberta YET ecologists tell us that even that .2 percent is not in reality “restored” as the restoration of wetlands is one of the most complex endeavors one can attempt. They point out that what the Government considers restored is a FRACTION of the ecosystem that the original wetlands were when it comes to biodiversity and the ability to retain and clean water.
In other words in some 60 years a mere fraction of some .2 percent is restored and of that .2 percent the efficiency of those restored wetlands a fraction of what was there before.
NATURE gave us those wetlands for FREE and big Industry has utterly destroyed it at PROFIT. The real value of those destroyed wetlands to our Societies and to this earth far exceeds the value of the oil removed.
This is generally true for many kinds of resource extraction – open-pit copper mines, mountain-top-removal coal mines, etc, etc, – but it is especially problematic with tar sands oil extraction where the so-called “overburden” is of such high ecological value and the product obtained so nearly worthless. I.E. when all of the energy used to expose, mine, refine and transport tar sands oil is subtracted from the energy obtained from
tar sands oil the net energy gain is close to zero — an inexcusable waste.
There’s no water without “nature,” but we can get more specific about solutions.
Deep aquifers take centuries and aeons to fill. When we drain them, this is a deep and extensive loss. It is also an unnecessary one: almost every place that people exist receives far more water than humans and far less than humans could gather.
There’s a bit of craft to this, but the basics are simple: stop it, spread it, and sink it. Rather than speed water unto the sea, send it to storage, and sink it in the ground when we are done with it.
Since governments and most businesses have strong motivations to avoid solving these problems, solutions are likely to be executed by individuals and smaller groups. Here are a few places to start:
- Earthworks to stop water, spread it, and soak it (Yeoman’s keyline system, permaculture swales, gabions, sand dams, check dams)
- Re-use of greywater (Art Ludwig)
- Curb cuts and repurposing of urban runoff (Brad Lancaster, Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond)
- artificial wetland bio-filters
- earth and sand filters
- Windbreaks for cropped fields
- Shade for cropped fields in hot and dry climates
- Mulch cover for cropped fields to retain water
- Return organic matter to soil (where it retains moisture)
- Re-foresting areas can increase downwind rainfall by 40%
- Removal of large and wasteful systems like massive dams and aqueducts in the Western US
- Reduce or eliminate large holdings of surface water in dry, windy, environments
- Reduce or eliminate long-distance transfer of water
People who want to keep their large and centralized businesses are not going to help with this.
The Colorado River used to flow all the way to the Pacific. It no longer does.
Well, well, looks the hippies were right after all.