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How can we treat clean water as we do?

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#1    Nordmann61


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Posted 17 August 2010 - 07:34 PM

Think about this:
71 percent of our planet is covered with water, but 97 percent of it is in the oceans as salty water, and cannot be used as drinking water without being desalinated.
The remaining 3 percent is freshwater, but 77 percent of it is bound in polar icecaps and glaciers, and is accessible just for a few tens of thousand people. The freshwater from the glaciers is only available as meltwater.
Over 22 percent of the remaining freshwater is grundwater, it must be pumped up and in many cases filtered to be drinkable.
Less than one percent of the freshwater is the water we see in lakes and rivers.
We in the western developed world take water from granted, and treat it as such. Many of us let the water run from the tap when we do the 3 minute toothbrush, two times a day. An amouont of freshwater that is precious in other parts of the world. When we answer a call of nature, to the average of 5 times a day, about 3 gallons or 12 liter of water is flushed down each time,  about 15 gallons or 60 litres of fresh clean drinkingwater for our lavatory needs.
60 litres could  keep a person with water for 20 days in the desert areas of the world.
Think about all the water that is uses for watering golf greens in dry areas of the world. Instead of desert landscaping, many is watering lawns in high desert areas. Think about the evaporation of freshwater from swimming pools, in itself an enormous amount of water.
Few of us in the western developed world think about what a immense luxury it is to pour ourself a glass of clean drinkingwater from the tap.
Will  oceanwater desalination plants soon be as important as oil processing plants? Will it be mandatory to use rainwater to flushing lavatories? Will water saving lavatories be the law?
Would any of this be enough in the future with the rapidly growing population and its demand for freshwater? Will water be piped from nations with plenty of freshwater to nations that have not?
When each of us in the western developed save water, it would not mean that that the same amount will sprout up from the ground in the desert areas of the world of course.
But distrubution of water from those who have to those who have not will be the most pressing issue on the agenda for most nations in the future.
Cheers, Nordmann61.

Edited by Nordmann61, 17 August 2010 - 07:39 PM.

#2    stevewinn


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Posted 17 August 2010 - 08:06 PM

we treat water as we do because we have more than enough. where i live we get more than are fair share of annual rain fall. its not my fault people live in dryer places, so when i let the water run while brushing my teeth or watering the garden i don't feel guilty.

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#3    Mac E

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 02:44 PM


Um, okay  :tu:

As to the topic, we do have plenty of water where I live.  I think that is why settlements were originally started.  They have good food source, water and defense.  Of course as populations rose, the demand on the water supplies increased and could deminish them in certain areas of the world.  Humans were originally nomads and moved about until farming came around.  The nomad style should suit people in areas where water is unpredictable.

Edited by Still Waters, 13 October 2010 - 03:30 PM.
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#4    The Silver Thong

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 06:44 AM

Your water is as clean as you demand from your government. If one is not happy change it as to many have tried and failed do to a lack of basic hygiene.

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#5    msmike1


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Posted 13 October 2010 - 02:59 PM

Water is not the only thing that is wasted. We waste everything and most take all the luxuries we have for granted. Running water would be an example. Most luxuries are not considered luxuries until they are gone or not as readily available as they once were. It really is sad to think of all the things we take for granted and waste. Just sit down and consider for a moment if you didn't have indoor plumbing with clean running water, and a toilet to flush, and grocery stores weren't on every corner. Consider having to grow and kill what you and your family would eat, and depending on mother nature to provide rain for crops and plentiful drinking water. This was the case not very long ago for a lot of people, and is still the case for some.


#6    thermodynamics


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Posted 13 October 2010 - 07:52 PM

Thanks for sharing Nordman61!

You cannot change the past nor know what is to come, so why regret anything or worry?

#7    StoneSmasher


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Posted 14 October 2010 - 02:23 AM

It is not economical to transport water over long distances.  It weighs too much.  You don't ship water to Saudia Arabia, you send them wheat.  Drinking water is a very very small amount of water usage in the developed world.  Mostly we use it for irrigation and industrial purposes. At my job we pull thousands of gallons per minute out of the river. Even your house, you use more water for flushing your toilet than drinking.  At any rate when you waste water at your house it is just dirtied, not destroyed.  We clean it, poop in it, clean it again then release it back from whence it came.

#8    Curious68


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Posted 14 October 2010 - 11:38 AM

Nanotechnology could give us all clean water.

#9    cookies


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Posted 15 October 2010 - 03:26 PM

They somehow 'reused' the water that we used. And the water will go through a few process before its drinkable again. If the polar icecaps melts and wouldn't it join the sea and soon it'll also become salty?


#10    StoneSmasher


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Posted 15 October 2010 - 09:30 PM

View Postcookies, on 15 October 2010 - 03:26 PM, said:

They somehow 'reused' the water that we used. And the water will go through a few process before its drinkable again. If the polar icecaps melts and wouldn't it join the sea and soon it'll also become salty?

The northern Ice cap is already joined to the sea, it floats on top of it. Which means if it melted sea levels would not rise - it already displaces all the water it would if it melted. But if it melted, then yes it would be salty. If the southern ice cap melted then yes it would flow to the sea, it is landbound.  Though no one credible is forecasting that.

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