March 22nd is World Water Day; do you know where your water comes from? If you do, you’re part of an elite group; only 23% of Americans know what lake, river or stream lies at the other end of their faucet.
You might ask: So? What’s the big deal? For starters, while water covers 70% of our planet, just .03% of that water is easily accessible and drinkable. That’s right: not 3%…not 0.3%…but .03%.
That leaves nearly 2 billion people without access to clean drinking water. Think how hard your life would be if you couldn’t just turn on the tap and let it flow.
Take the Colorado River, for example. More than 33 million people (and growing!) depend on this watershed for drinking water, farming, ranching, tourism, energy and business. In fact, demand for water is so high that the Colorado River hasn’t reached the sea since 1998.
John F. Kennedy believed that “anyone who can solve the problems of water will be worthy of two Nobel prizes – one for peace and one for science.” I couldn’t agree more.
But I also think that we cannot wait for others to solve the global challenges that we face. We must be part of the solution. At The Nature Conservancy, we’ve spent the last 62 years working to protect the lands and waters on which life depends. But we can’t do it alone, and we can’t achieve the scale of change we need if people aren’t aware of our water challenges and advocating for change.
Knowing where your water comes from is the first step to protecting it. So if you’re one of the 77% of Americans who don’t know where your drinking water comes from, find out today at H2.O.
What else can you do? Take care to monitor and converse your daily water use. Do you have efficient fixtures or a shower bucket? Make sure you’re implementing these 20 ways to conserve water in the home.
You can also be a part of our March 31st Thunderclap, which will create an online wave of attention to water and amplify our collective voices.
It takes guts to take on the global water challenges we face and to create a social movement to demand change – but we all have a role to play in addressing our global and local water crises.
Join us, and help give the world a little liquid courage.