Fresh water accounts for only 2.5% of Earth's water, yet it is vital for human civilization. What are our sources of fresh water? In the first of a two part series on fresh water, Christiana Z. Peppard breaks the numbers down and discusses who is using it and to what ends.
Christiana Z. Peppard is a water-loving biologist turned ethicist who thinks a lot about bodies of water and the fact/value distinction. She is Assistant Professor of Theology, Science and Ethics at Fordham University in New York City.
The U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Use Information Program is responsible for compiling and disseminating the nation's water-use data. The USGS works in cooperation with local, state, and federal environmental agencies to collect water-use information. USGS compiles this data to produce water-use information aggregated at the county, state, and national levels. Every five years, data at the county level is compiled into a national water-use data system, and state-level data is published in a national circular.
There are a number of ways to save water, and many start with you.
The World Bank: Meeting the increasing demands for water services, while managing water in a sustainable way can be a tremendous challenge for many countries. Water services (water supply and sanitation, irrigation and drainage, energy, environmental services) use water to promote growth and development, but water is finite and access to services is not guaranteed if they are not managed properly. Managing water and land in a more integrated way is critical to ensuring access to clean drinking water, reducing water pollution, protecting biodiversity, and controlling flooding and food security.
The National Geographic Society’s freshwater initiative is a global effort to inspire and empower individuals and communities to conserve fresh water and preserve the extraordinary diversity of life that rivers, lakes, and wetlands sustain.
The U.S. Geological Survey provides unbiased, timely, and relevant information and studies about groundwater resources of the Nation.