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Whose Water Is It?: The Unquenchable Thirst of a Water-Hungry World

Overview

It's Often Said that We are Mostly Water and that we live on a watery planet. But though the globe is 7/8 water, only a small part is fresh, and less than one percent is available for all of humankind's uses: drinking and cleaning; irrigating crops; powering and cooling industry, along with countless other demands. Without water, civilization is impossible -- and we're running out of it. Some of our greatest rivers have all but dried up, and we are using what we have left much faster than it can be replenished, a...
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Overview

It's Often Said that We are Mostly Water and that we live on a watery planet. But though the globe is 7/8 water, only a small part is fresh, and less than one percent is available for all of humankind's uses: drinking and cleaning; irrigating crops; powering and cooling industry, along with countless other demands. Without water, civilization is impossible -- and we're running out of it. Some of our greatest rivers have all but dried up, and we are using what we have left much faster than it can be replenished, a problem that will only grow worse as the global population grows and the rate of climate change and airborne pollution quickens. There are dire consequences of current trends, from desertification to epidemic disease to increasingly bitter battles over who "owns" water and how to apportion our dwindling supply. But there are ways to avert disaster. Focused on the crucial years of the immediate future, this book is a blueprint that calls for change -- in our personal lives, our attitudes, and our industries -- that promises long-term solutions. Whose Water Is It? is both fascinating and frightening as it portrays a thirsty world that must transform itself to survive
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780792262381
  • Publisher: National Geographic Society
  • Publication date: 10/1/2003
  • Pages: 232
  • Sales rank: 1,027,136
  • Product dimensions: 6.22 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
Ownership 1
Bottling a Birthright? 9
The World's Water: A Human Right or a Corporate Good? 25
Three Rivers 41
Scarcity 55
Working for Water 65
The Effect of Emerging Water Shortages on the World's Food 77
Mountain Wise and Water Smart 89
Conflict 103
"Water Wars" and Other Tales of Hydromythology 109
From the Forest to the Faucet 125
Accommodation Turns to Conflict: Lessons from the Colorado 139
Prospects 155
Mountain Water: Lifeblood of the Prairies 163
A Child's Reminder 177
A Soft Path: Conservation, Efficiency, and Easing Conflicts over Water 187
Alchemy or Salvation? Desalting the Sea 199
Afterword 213
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