Water Scarcity Issues: We’re running out of water – FEW Resources.org

Newsweek cover, 2010: echoing famous T. Boone Pickens quote

  • There are both supply-side threats and demand-side threats to water necessary to meet human needs; as T. Boone Pickens has been quoted as saying, “Water is the new oil”
  • One supply-side threat arises from instances in which we are withdrawing freshwater from surface water sources and groundwater aquifers at rates faster than replenishment or recharge
  • Another supply-side problem is that even if there is enough water, it is not water that is good enough to meet human needs; much of the world’s fresh water is being degraded
  • Still another supply-side problem is the fact that distinct from physical water scarcity, there is economic scarcity for the global poor
  • One demand-side concern arises from the fact of an increasing number of people on the planet
  • Another demand-side problem is that high-demand users sometimes are geographically concentrated in regions that cannot sustain demand levels
  • Still another demand-side problem arises from technologies that waste more water than alternative technologies
  • A fourth set of demand-side problems is that demand is often insufficiently restrained because of inadequate price mechanisms and outdated legal rules that set few limits on excessive use
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