Freshwater isn’t given everyone

Freshwater isn’t given everyone. Warnings about water shortages can be heard increasingly often. Yet the amount of water on our planet is the same as it has always been. The water shortage we hear about is regarding clean water, not water as a whole. We have a rapidly growing problem in that there is less and less fresh water available. But if everyone helps out, the turn of events can be halted.

When freshwater isn’t given everyone water scarcity grows

As it stands today, it’s only when the water disappears or poses a problem that we turn our eyes towards the issue. If nothing happens, we take for granted that water will always flow from our taps upon turning them but freshwater isn’t given everyone. However – this is a reasonably new mentality for us humans, and in many places, that mentality doesn’t exist at all. In regards to Sweden, it’s enough to go back half a century to see how much more careful we were with our water. During that time, showering daily was just not done. The bathtub was partially filled once a week, and the kids took their turn to wash up. And no one was dirtier then than we are now. Somewhere along the road up to today, we have lost respect for clean water. We need to learn that freshwater isn’t given everyone and to once again become adept at managing and respecting our water as the survival element it is.

I hope that this chapter and the rest of the book will instil a better understanding of how the water on earth is connected and how it moves in an eternal cycle. And above all, how the water affects us, and how we affect the water.

How much water is out there?

When freshwater isn’t a given everyone, there is essential to know how much water there is. Our oceans are humongous and also where we have most of our water. A whopping 97 per cent of the earth’s water is saltwater.

Those remaining THREE per cents are divided in:

⇾            75 per cent frozen water in ice and snow

⇾            13.5 to per cent deeply buried groundwater, also known as fossil water, which lies at a depth of more than 800 metres.

These two types are challenging to replace or replenish.

⇾            11 per cent shallow groundwater, less than 800 meters down

⇾            0.3 per cent in lakes and ponds

⇾            0.6 per cent in the soils

⇾            0.03 per cent in rivers

⇾            0.035 per cent in the atmosphere

These five forms, scarcely 12 per cent of the total 3 per cent, are the only water sources that we can influence.

The water’s turnover period is the time it takes for all the water within a system to be replaced. Depending on which water system we’re talking about, the turnaround period varies substantially. In the sea, the turnover period is an unbelievable 37,000 years. At the same time, it only takes a measly 14 days for the water in our bodies to be replaced.

Earth’s freshwater isn’t given everyone

All living things need water. In agriculture, a lot of farms use irrigation systems. For organic farming that utilizes water from sources passing by their farms in a natural way, problems rarely occur. The water does its’ job, sometimes several times over on the same farm. After which it flows on to the next area, where it can be used again since chemicals haven’t destroyed it. Another positive example of irrigation is when you take wastewater – that hasn’t been contaminated – from one business to another.

However, as it is right now, considerate water usage is implemented far too little, which means that the earth’s freshwater supply is about to run dry.

Instead, what we have is more and more water that is too toxic to use and often impossible to treat. We have ended up in a situation where some of our water has become hazardous waste.

Unfortunately, there is an infinite number of examples of how freshwater is abused and dirtied by anything and everything from our own toilets to various industrial processes, as well as examples of water used solely for pleasure in irrigation of lawns and other nonproductive areas.

The water’s pH

Water pH plays a significant role in the processes of everything living. Naturally, – the soils pH levels are dependent on the water pH. A neutral pH is 7. The lower the number, the more acidic the environment, and the higher the number, the more basic.

Generally, rain is at a pH between 6.2–6.5, which would make it acidic. This means that the water in nature is also more acidic. One way to see this is when water in nature is frothing. This is because acidic water froths more easily than alkaline (basic) water.

That our water has become more acidic is due to the different emissions into our atmosphere, and the more acidic the water, the higher the damage it can cause. Sometimes the rain is exceptionally acidic, and we call this acid rain. During this type of rainfall, the rain causes our seas, lakes, and lands to acidify. This has, in turn, caused fish to die – has even caused whole bodies of water to die – and in nature, causes the leaves to yellow and dry out, just like in autumn. The plants’ ability to absorb nutrients from the ground is also affected, as the acid rain causes the roots of the plants to die.

Artificial rain

When freshwater isn’t given everyone we can start to create artificial rain, and this is already in play in many places around the world through spreading small particles of silver iodide in a suitable area of rain clouds. The technique is far from safe and is up for debate more often than not. But the creation of rain is not really a new practice. The fact is that the rain dances of the various indigenous people may very well create rain if the right conditions are met. When they dance, a lot of dust swirls up, and if this dust is brought upwards with the wind, rain is a strong possibility.