Hydrology: focus on water quantity

Celebrating World Water Day 2013

Brian Luenow
Started by Brian Luenow on
22 Mar 2013 at 11:07
Know-how: Project Management, Advocacy


In honor of World Water Day on March 22 I wanted to give you a brief history on World Water Day.  Before I do that let’s look at some facts about water and the worldwide water (and sanitation) crisis:

  • If you look at all the water in the world you’d find that:
    • 97.5% of it is saltwater and therefore cannot be used for drinking water (it could be desalinated, but this is costly and takes a lot of energy, plus you need to find something to do with all the brine, a byproduct of the process).
    • The remaining 2.5% is fresh water, however, 70% of that is frozen in ice caps, and almost 30% is locked deep underground. 
    • This means less than 1% of the world’s fresh water is easily accessible to humans via lakes, shallow aquifers, rivers, streams and the like.
  • 3.4 million people die every year from water and sanitation related diseases, which is like the entire population of Los Angeles dying.  99% of these deaths are in developing nations.

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