The Reality We Often Forget
“Water water everywhere, nor any drop to drink”: one of the most lionized lines, taken from the poem “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. There is nothing that can explain the future of this world finer than this line, if the humans are to continue their deeds.
Given the fact 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by water, a fallacious hope of never having to battle water scarcity is ubiquitous in our global community.Yet they ignore the truth that 96.5% of the total water content of the earth is oceans, 0.9% is other saline water bodies and only 2.5% is fresh water. The 2.5% fresh water is distributed among various other sources such as ground water, glaciers etc leaving just less than 1% available for consumption. (Statistics taken from USGS).
Health Hazards Due to Water Pollution
- In agriculture sectors the fertilizers used mostly contain nitrogen, as it is an essential factor for production. Even though nitrogen is the most crucial nutrient required, it is volatile and unstable at the same time. From time to time, the lion’s share of these nitrogen fertilizers seep into either water or air. Nitrogen content in water is the main culprit behind the diseases such as Methaemoglobinemia and Blue Baby Syndrome (-in Blue Baby Syndrome oxygen is trapped within an infant’s body thus giving it a bluish color).
- It isn’t any secret that from the days of yore, salt has been playing the role of a villain who wade into soil and water bodies thereby highly contaminating them. These saline waters and soils are slowly but steadily spreading across the world. Saline waters can cause major health hazards especially for those under tender care such as infants and expecting mothers, as this saline content can retard the human growth. The high intake of salt by pregnant women may lead to pre-eclampsia, gestational hypertension and may even end up in a miscarriage.
Increasing Demand for Water Leading to Dispute
Once a famous American poet W.H. Auden in his poem, ‘First thing First’ quoted, “Thousands have lived without love, not one without water”. As of March 2021, the world population has reached 7.9 billion, and it won’t be long before it could align with the world’s Carrying Capacity. Out of this 7.9 billion who all are to gain access to the fresh water left around the globe? Won’t this lead to yet more inequality?
Many people from some parts of Middle East and African countries have migrated to places like Europe, partly due to scarcity of water. Later, conflicts were broken out between locals and migrants, which even paved way for terrorism. Apart from these migration disputes, there are even countries that fight over the water bodies they share, such as Nile Basin Conflict, Euphrates-Tigris dispute, Mekong River Basin dispute, etc.
Isn’t it quite fascinating that as we are discussing the dissension that exists between different countries over the water resources they share, India, our motherland, suffers the same fate between its different states? In case you are not familiar with such issues, you can make yourself aware about cases like The Cauvery water Dispute, Mullaperiyar Dam Dispute, etc.
Involvement of NGOs in Water Conservation
NGOs play a vital role to impart proper education to the local people, regarding the necessity to conserve water through campaigns, seminars and workshops. Thus, NGOs essentially act as an information hub that provide updated data on the level of water contamination, quality of water, various health issues caused by contaminated water, and so on.
AMO foundation, that started with the aim of spreading love and creating abundance, highly appreciates working hand in hand with those NGOs that exhibit great enthusiasm on works related to water conservation. Let us all strive towards creating a better tomorrow by saving water, not just for us but also for the generations yet to come.