More than 70% of our world is made up of water. Only 3% is freshwater, and merely 33% is within reach for city and agricultural use. This means that most of the world’s freshwater resource is deeply hidden underground or solid ice.
Currently, worldwide water sources are aquifers. Aquifers are underground layers that yield water for springs, wells, and other bodies of water. The rapid population growth and modernization massively increase freshwater demand. Water-intensive commodities stress the need for more freshwater resources.
Such high freshwater demand resulted in the quick depletion of more than half of all the world’s biggest aquifers. This problem will continue to grow with time. Freshwater reserves necessary for water consumption, food security, and energy production are estimated to reach a 40% dip.
Climate change further threatens this instability. Global warming can further destabilize various ecosystems and further limit access to the remaining freshwater reserves.
Water in an Unstable Climate
The regular rainfall pattern can be affected by rapid climate change as well. Recent drought experienced in South East Asia proves that water is in the center of this occurring climate change.
“We need to act quickly and initiate water harvesting alternatives that can help increase our freshwater resource,” explains Sarah Gold, Chairman of Prance Gold Holdings & Trust, a top international trading company that focuses on creating innovative tools to improve financial market investments. “Water sustainability must be in line with adaptive development, and governments must collaborate so that best practices are identified and utilized immediately,” she adds.
Water Consumption in Agriculture
Agricultural production consumes more than 70% of freshwater supply. Hence, it will be the first to feel the effects of freshwater depletion. Consequently, agricultural production needs to be maintained and even improved. The rapid population increase demands the need for more food production so that global food security is realized. Similarly, farming income needs to be maintained and also improved. All around the world, farmers are among the lowest-paid workers. Thus, many of them choose to switch jobs, resulting in considerable gaps in the perpetuation of adequate food production.
Modern Agriculture as Less Water Intensive
It is a global responsibility to make agriculture less water-intensive. Hence, several innovations are encouraged.
Preservation of Wetlands
Wetlands are freshwater safeguards, protecting freshwater from dry spells and contamination. It is essential to maintain healthy wetlands, eradicate overgrazing, and protect streams and lakes from destruction and depletion.
Promotion of Agroforestry
It is essential to maintain vegetation so that groundwater runoff is avoided. For instance, herders must be mindful of the tree cover and allow cattle to graze under its shade. This improves pasture productivity and decreases water consumption.
Water conservation is highly essential. City and agricultural usage of water must be modified so that freshwater resources do not get depleted rapidly. People need to adapt to the changes brought about by climate change and practice alternative farming strategies to reduce fresh water consumption. Similarly, careless water use must be halted, and it is high time to start seeking ways to protect ecosystems and freshwater sources.
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