Water and Society

What makes our connection to water so important, so elemental? How will the degradation of our bodies of water affect our societies, near and far? And primordially, how have we gotten to where we are today? The first few posts will focus on water, and its growing scarcity. First of all, I believe it is important to give some numbers: according to World Wildlife Fund 1.1 billion people worldwide lack access to water, and a total of 2.7 billion find water scarce for at least one month of the year; that is, roughly 38% of the human population finds difficulties in reaching clean water daily. These numbers are only the beginning, and they will keep growing as more and more water is being wasted and polluted. The earliest impacts of the scarcity of freshwater around the world will reach our markets, embodied in shortfalls in crop yield and varying food prices. Our agrarian society is, for now, entirely dependent on our ability to protect the watersheds. In addition, our demand of water is closely interlinked with our global economy. In the course of the 20th century, our population grew by a factor of four, and our freshwater withdrawal, by nine.

Our next post will focus on water in relation with agriculture. Please visit our Facebook page, The Human Agreement, for sources.

 Photography Credits: Aaron Burden

Photography Credits: Aaron Burden