Although the world is facing a water crisis, the major issue is not having little water, but the rather mismanagement of this crucial resource. Even though it may be argued that population growth is putting pressure on water resource, which is creating shortage of water, there is no denying of massive wastage that occurs when people think there is no scarcity. When using freshwater in functions such as agriculture, domestic purposes and industrial use, a lot of water is wasted due to the perception that there is plenty of it (Clarke, 2013). Realizing the need to save water and coming up with water management practices would provide a solution to this. For instance, the knowledge that some crops may require more water than others may lead to change in emphasis, for instance growing more rice and less wheat.
Water shortage is real due to many factors such as increasing global demand due to population increase and draining of some water sources due to climatic change. However, the greatest challenge is not shortage but the management of the available water (Clarke, 2013). The world is still getting rains as before and the ground water have not gone anywhere, if anything there should be an increase due to global warming and melting polar ice caps. What should be addressed is how wastages of water can be reduced through a better water management strategy. The world policy makers should also figure out how sanitation of water can be increased as well as use new water sources while conserving those in existence. Tran’s boundary cooperation in management of water need to be enhanced to ensure cooperation and peace towards water use as opposed to conflicts, which have adverse impact on the water.
Evolution to a vegetarian diet will not only have a positive impact on the health of human beings, eating flesh is associated with some forms of cancer, but will also have a positive impact on the environment. Meat eating in is not sustainable as livestock farming is increasingly adding pressure to the environment.
First, rearing cattle, goats and other animals that provides us with meat calls for large portions of land, which has led to massive deforestation as land, is not enough. Considering that farm animals requires more land than crops calls for change in diet and consider taking more farm crops than animal products.
Vegetables are less associated with lifestyle diseases and thus taking them will be like killing two birds with one stone (Marlow et al. 2009). Another impact that rearing of animals for meat have on the environment is destruction of grassland, which have negative implication to wildlife. Therefore, shifting to vegetables as opposed to meat would be a positive step. Moreover, livestock rearing have an impact on the demand for water with livestock contributing greatly to the shortage. This comes in form of water they drink and on pollution brought about by the livestock waste.
I agree with David Goodstein that dependence on fossil fuel is a short tem solution and it is a matter of time before the world is forced to find alternatives to fossil fuels. This may take years to happen but it is no longer a question of “if” but “when.” Fossil fuels are finite and therefore a time will come when they will all be depleted which will call for new sources of energy. This is made worse by declining rate of discovery of fossil fuels and increasing rate of consumption.
Another way of looking at it is the extent of environmental damage that comes with fossil fuels which means this cannot be sustained in the long-run (MacKay, 2008). Even though some opponents of this view argues that technological advancements are taking care of the global depletion, most agrees this will only be delayed. It is therefore imperative that the world move towards getting renewable sources of energy as the discrepancy between the demand and supply of fossil fuels continues to rise.
Renewable energy sources are better solutions as they are not depleted and their environmental impact is minimal. Solar power, wind power among other non-renewable energy sources need to be exploited if civilization as we know it is to survive.
The fossil fuels are being depleted at a fast rate calling for use of renewable energy sources as an alternative. However, the move to renewable energy sources is driven more by the costs and risks associated with fossil fuels. The world is becoming conscious of the hidden costs that comes with fossil fuels including human health problems, land damage as well as environmental degradation.
The cost that is normally considered includes labor costs, transportation and materials, which means the price paid for fuel is only inclusive of these costs (Inman, 2013). If the hidden cost of the fossil fuels were to be factored in, the cost would be huge and people would not afford. Realization of these costs, which is already happening, will lead to countries moving to renewable energies, which have no such costs (Chu & Majumdar, 2012).
This means migrating to renewable sources need not necessary to be driven by lack of their supply, as they would still take long to become depleted, but rather due to cost and risks involved. Some other risks that comes with fossil fuels includes global warming which comes from carbon dioxide emitted by burning of fossil fuel and which traps heat in the earth’s atmosphere. Air pollution, land and water pollution are other risks that will drive people to using renewable energy sources.
I agree with Michael Webber that energy water and food problems are interdependent and need to be solved together. These are very critical resources as it would be impossible to survive without any of them. While water is required in growing of crops to be used for food, it is only through the use of energy that the water can be pumped to the farm. Water can be used as a source of energy and therefore this cycle goes on and on.
This therefore implies that strains on one have an endangering impact on the other. Solving these problems in an integrated way would therefore be the best way of handling these issues. To solve this problem what is required is through the use of landscape approach where there will be an understanding that natural resources are shared and therefore inspire competing demands of addressing the issues.
For instance, there would be ecologically friendly farming ways that would preserve source of obtaining clean water for various users (Bazilian, et al. 2011).
Bazilian, M., Rogner, H., Howells, M., Hermann, S., Arent, D., Gielen, D., … & Yumkella, K. K. (2011). Considering the energy, water and food nexus: Towards an integrated modelling approach. Energy Policy, 39(12), 7896-7906.
Chu, S., & Majumdar, A. (2012). Opportunities and challenges for a sustainable energy future. nature, 488(7411), 294-303.
Clarke, R. (2013). Water: the international crisis. Routledge.
Inman, M. (2013). The true cost of fossil fuels. Scientific American, 308(4), 58-61.
MacKay, D. (2008). Sustainable Energy-without the hot air. UIT Cambridge.
Marlow, H. J., Hayes, W. K., Soret, S., Carter, R. L., Schwab, E. R., & Sabaté, J. (2009). Diet and the environment: does what you eat matter?. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 89(5), 1699S-1703S.
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