World Water Day

From National Geographic
Women spend the day fetching water

This week marked the 17th anniversary of the UN designated World Water Day.  Here are some little known tidbits I’ve gathered to honor it.

  • One in eight people in the world don’t have access to safe water
  • There are 8.8 million swimming pools in the United States.
  • Millions of women and children spend several hours a day collecting water from distant, often polluted sources
  • 2.5 billion people live without a toilet.
  • 2.53 percent of earth’s water is fresh, and some two-thirds of that is locked up in glaciers and permanent snow cover
  • More than 3.5 million people die each year from water-related disease; 84 percent are children.
  • Lack of access to clean water and sanitation kills children at a rate equivalent of a jumbo jet crashing every four hours.
So, now after all that scary stuff here’s a treat: National Geographic has a special interactive issue dedicated to Water but available for a FREE download.  As usual the photos are glorious, some absolutely stunning and the entire issue is full of interesting and important articles.  If you don’t mind the standard “sign up” (only name, email and password) then the download is really worthwhile.

And last, but not least, given my many entries on the evils of plastic bottles and the bottling/soda industries’ efforts to brainwash us that our tap water is bad for us–so that they can fill their bottles with tap water and sell it to us–is a wonderful new animation/video by Annie Leonard. (You may remember her last viral hit called “The Story of Stuff” which you can view here if you haven’t yet seen it! Her website has several other gems as well.)

3 thoughts on “World Water Day”

  1. The thing that is amazing to me is that a story like this gets published and not one aide organization, rich movie star or politician with pull, can get a balloon tired, flatbed wagon or rickshaw over there to help. It doesn't have to have a motor. Pulling it would be more efficient than 1 woman carrying 1 cannister of water. And where are the men anyway?

  2. Dear Bonnie,
    Your blog is really revving up, with YouTube and great photos (and as always, great writing). Water has always been a great concern of mine. I once received a "message" from someone you knew and loved:
    "Let the waters flow
    Keep the waters flowing
    Let the salmon swim
    Keep the salmon swimming"
    Our system of dams in this country and the world are like clogs in the arteries of Mother Earth; no wonder She is sick. Water is not permitted to flow underground to be cleansed by minerals, and emerge from natural springs and rivers in crystal clean clear condition.
    And your argument about the bottled water industry is a horrifying truth. I use your stainless steel container (complete with the new top you sent me!) all the time, filling it with tap water and letting it sit for about 30 minutes so the chlorine can evaporate out of it. Quickly boiled water is my favorite.
    A great book to add to your new gidget of changing book recommendations is Cadillac Desert, a classic about water commodification in this country.
    I have read Michael Pollan's book, Botany of Desire, and highly recommend it . . . especially the chapter on humankind's evolving relationship to marijuana, potatoes, the tulip, etc.
    Another gem is David James Duncan's My Story as Told by Water . . . exquisite (hope I got the title and author right); a series of autobiographical essays based on water.
    Ohh . . . one other: Ecology of the People by ??? Check Amazon for summaries and author, etc.
    Enough for now. Many thanks for your efforts for the well-being of our planet
    much love,

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