What is water scarcity? It is a higher demand for water more than its supply. Chennai water crisis brought attention to the effect of climate change on rainfall. India saw a significant water crisis in Chennai as most of the reservoir became empty due to a shortage of rainfall. For two consecutive years, Monsoon’s rainfall was not adequate to fill the natural resources of the town. Result of which officials had to order water tanks from outside states, which were very expensive. So why this crisis happened. We cannot blame specifically rainfall for this water scarcity. The neighboring countries like Thailand had plenty of rainfall. Well, the answers lie majorly not with rainfall, but how do we treat the rain and natural resources of the World.
Water is formed due to a continuous cycle of the earth’s atmosphere. Evaporated water molecule forms clouds and when these clouds get dense, rain happens. However, over the centuries, humans are utilizing natural resources without much care to it. The result is more demand for water than its availability. Eventually, this leads to water scarcity. Water must be treated as a rare asset, with a far narrower focus on its consumption and utilization. How we can solve the water crisis, how and what solutions are available to us to address this immediate threat to mankind. Let’s take at solutions that can help to overcome water scarcity.
A significant amount of deforestation impacts the balance of nature. Exceedingly deforestation brings floods, storms, and disasters. Deforestation can be limited by setting policies across every region and curb on illegal exports. Governments can propose deforestation bills where at any time, any geographical region should have at least 70% of land covered with forest or trees or plants. Developed nations in the Americas and European regions have these types of policies. Even in developing nations like the Philippines, every building rooftop in Manila city has numerous types of plantations.
Balanced agriculture fertilizers and production
Sowing limited seeds per hectare can help to reduce the requirement of water for farming. For example, 100 kilos graded wheat seeds is enough for one hectare of land. This measurement would help to balance the production and avoid the overproduction of crops. Following these measurements incorrectly would lead to overproduction or underproduction for which there will be a higher requirement of water resources.
There are three types of wastewater. Greywater, Blackwater, and White water. Greywater is the type of water that can be filtered and reused for drinking. Some of the latest water purifiers contain filters that purify any type of water like gutter water, air conditioner water, bathing soapy water, bore water, etc. Blackwater is usually sewage like water that cannot be reused for drinking however Blackwater can be used for agriculture irrigation purposes. White water is a regular river or water from dams which is perfectly drinkable.
Cloud seeding or Artificial rain
With artificial rain, clouds are brought into rainfall favorable conditions using various chemicals. It happens in multiple steps.
- In the first steps, calcium chloride, calcium oxide, Calcium Carbide, Ammonium Nitrate, compounds of salt, and urea’s is released into the air where the artificial rain is needed.
- In a second step, clouds are made denser and increase pressure in clouds by adding calcium chloride and dry ice.
- In the third step, silver iodide with dry ice is release with the help of balloons, flight, or missiles. The third step happens only when clouds are already formed naturally or with the help of the first and second steps.
Improve Farmer’s behavior & Awareness:
It depends on farmers on when and how they use their water resources. For unknown reasons, they tend to spend more water than required for irrigation in imagination that more water may yield high crop productivity. The following are examples where farmers need to improve their behavior to reduce water leakage.
- Farmers are running drip irrigation without time limitation.
- Not closing big water tap instantly,
- Pulling more water than required from wells.
Also, farmer’s behavior and their ability to adapt to weather situations like summer and winter will determine how they will utilize their resources in the future. Farmers should be aware of policy changes and the latest technology science. It will help them to better cope with water in their day to day activities.
Well-connected sewage lines
If there is well-connected sewage, the rainwater and wastewater is a drain to a central tank where we can store this water. A control system containing visual statistic charts can be installed to monitor and assess the availability of water in these tanks. We can also utilize artificial intelligence algorithms to route water from these water tanks automatically. Also, remote-controlled sewage can be controlled by the central system to route the water to the required areas.
Filtration of ocean water
There is a way to filter ocean water. In every 1littre of seawater, there are 35 grams of salt present in it. Some companies have built products that can purify ocean water. It is an economical and ideal solution to produce fresh water. One of the examples of this is Rainmaker developed by Manoj Bhargava’s company. Their focus is mainly on Water, Energy, Agriculture, and Health.
Finding other sources of water on other planets:
Many countries’ space science exoplanet exploration is the primary focus on finding water, human, and natural resources on other planets. It requires a tremendous amount of cost and a lot of man-machine efforts.
- Digg Mar’s soil
- Evaporate Mar’s soil to capture water molecules.
- Store the water molecules in the condensed state.
- Transport to earth is just a series of humongous work. However, if successful, it would massively solve the water crisis problem.
These are small devices that can be easily fit into any tree plant. It catches the natural solar energy or winds around plants in a water bottle. It then drips the water molecule via a device that is fit along with the trees. We do not need to worry about a couple of weeks. Water evaporation occurs due to humidity and dryness, depending on the temperature of sunlight. This technique is beneficial when we have to go outside for travel, and no one is at home to daily provide water to plants.
Water Well & Water Bores
Human-made or natural wells are efficient ways to store water; however, over centuries the tremendous amount of water bore has dug. This has led to water competition. Governments agencies can come up with limitations on bores to ensure there is no over the drilling of bores and wells. Water aquifers are difficult to detect, and they get water from rain. So, if there is no rain, aquifers will be empty. Hence there is a need for a better mechanism to fetch water from the aquifer.
Artificial Lake, Canals:
The artificial lake is the most effective and economical solution for storing rainwater. Fishery and tourist business benefits from this as it attracts a lot of people around the world and helps to spread awareness of water consumption and storage. Asian countries like India, Bangladesh, Thailand are fortunate to have wetland and regular monsoon period, and these countries can easily create artificial lakes and canals.
The Farm water reservoir is a great way to store water. India has been the number one nation in building a water reservoir in the last decade. The government has announced up to 100% subsidies on the building of water reservoirs on farms. Initially, farmers must take care of the digging of land with the help of contractors. Then they must submit the bill to the government via an online application to get a refund of the cost required for building the water reservoir.
Solving Refugee water crisis
Around 80 million people are living in refugee camps across the world. That makes around 1600 million liters of water (20 liters per day per person) daily water requirement at refugee camps. In addition to that, there are water quality and contamination issues. Water wells usually fill these needs, bore wells, but there is a need for rainwater harvesting and humidity harvesting.
Wildlife and River basin protection
Illegal immigration has brought a lot of unemployed people to the jungle. These migrants live and employ on the surrounding resources for fire and water. They cut trees, emit greenhouse gases for their day to day living. River coast areas have abundant fish supply. These habitats rely heavy on river coastal fishing upon. They dump waste residue into the river basin, disturbing natural habitat under rivers. This leads to a huge danger to the ecosystem that is an integral part of the rainfall cycle. They steal of natural resources precious wood; rare animal specifies and thus destabilizes the nature.
60% of the rivers in the world have dams constructed on them, and these dams are a significant source of water for villages and various industries. Around 80% of non-urban populations rely on artificial dams in water drought areas.
Better rainwater harvesting
Many rainwater harvesting systems are already in place, but there are no systems for harvesting rainwater that falls on buildings and homes in metropolitan cities and villages. The good idea is to build a water tank underground and build a water collector at the rooftop so that water collected from the terrace drains into the underground tank. Another benefit is that it will avoid sucking of water inside building walls, thereby increasing the life of buildings.
The river flows across countries, states, and various conflicting political regions. If these geographical regions can work collaboratively to share water resources, then it would undoubtedly balance the demand and supply for water. The Indian state of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are classic examples of this idea. These two states effectively share waters from river Godavari, thereby helping an enormous number of farmers and villagers. Indus water treaty is another example of a fair division of water between the countries India and Pakistan. However, continuous political conflicts between these nations many times affect the collaboration.
Budget for Water research
Only limited countries have dedicated funding for research on water. There should be a separate budget for research. Universities can request funding to the government to open water research labs and awarding full scholarships to encourage students. Criteria setup for funding includes water drought-sensitive areas, types of impacts, extend of issue, identified research solutions, etc. As an example, the United States Environmental Protection Agency provides water research grants to advance science and tools. These tools help to build feasible solutions to water supply problems, guaranteeing water quality, and accessibility to protect humankind and ecology health.
Reduce water pollution
Water pollution occurs in a multitude of ways, majorly due to dumping food and waste materials directly in rivers. Then by maintaining clean rivers, water can flow naturally in all directions without blockage and reduce water filtering efforts. Many cities have water recycling plants where water spills over the street are collected during the night and filtered and recycled for its use.
Limit drinking water consumption
We as an independent person can follow simple steps to reduce personal water consumption
- Carry only the required amount of water while traveling. Store the leftover water after the journey to reuse for other household chores.
- Avoid storage of water in refrigerators, spare bottles. Only drink as required for body consumption.
- Use paper towels or napkins for small cleaning purposes.
Stop overproduction of crops
Early days, farmers used to harvest a crop only twice a year so that soil’s nutrients are maintained. However, farmer and business financial needs have forced farmers for the continuous and overproduction of crops. There is a need to stop the overproduction of crops so that lands do not lose their nutritional values. Also, farmers must be given a fair minimum selling rate for their fresh crops so that there is no need for re-harvesting in the same year. This will help to stop water usage for almost a year.
The vast majority of countries have festivals like Holi, Tomatina, Diwali, Mardi Gras, Krishna Jayanti, where water is splash over people. Such festivals need to come up with more innovative ways to reduce water consumption, use an alternate way to celebrate festivals.
Water pipeline breakage and Water Theft
Some of the most significant metropolitan cities have a considerable amount of slums where water theft is a common thing. The Government should impose string monitoring and control policies to avoid illegal water trade. Such cities have regular water pipeline breakage incidents where millions of gallons of water are lost and don’t have an immediate repair system in place.
Natural Disaster avoidance and prevention system: Tsunamis are now predictable at some level. In the year 2004, a massive Tsunami swept away many nations’ coastal areas. A lot of ocean water got into land due to which there were many causalities and required humongous amounts of human and water resources. If scientists can predict Tsunamis much advance, then it will help to organize preventive resources and impact less on water usage.
Limit water use in industry and economics:
The liquor sector connects with farming activities, and it is responsible for 70% of the world’s water consumption. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages require much water for the production of edible goods like wine, where water uses in every process – from washing grapes to cleaning bottles. Companies can use artificial intelligence algorithms to use water supply efficiently. Imposing a ban on illegal alcoholic companies would help to reduce water consumption.
Also, Coal manufacturing plants use a massive amount of water for their cleaning and processing. The fish processing companies use gallons of water to maintain the appropriate hygiene level and prevent spillage of products. For all these corporate fields, water usage needs to limit to a certain extent.
Use of latest technology consumer goods
The latest electronic machines, such as washing machines, come up with an energy rating. Higher energy rating means those machines are better at energy and water consumption. There are also simple solutions like installing caps on the water tap to reduce the water from the tap.
Up-gradation of monitoring tools and techniques
Many large scale programs are in place to monitor and track the underground water in countries like India and Brazil. However, some of these techniques are obsolete and require upgraded tools. Furthermore, dedicated training programs are required for farmers to use these latest machines and tools.
Form organizations on water scarcity
The World needs to unite on water scarcity and forgive its differences. As an example, the United Nations organization has established (WASAG) solely for water scarcity in agriculture. Israel has smart pricing and technology. They are helping the WorldWorld through drip irrigation, invented in Israel. Many corporate organizations conduct a weekly tree plantation program that helps to spread awareness of nature and save water.
Prioritize and monitoring of Water programs
Many organizations have water preservation programs in place, but they never get into implementation stages due to a lack of human resources or labor force. Short job tenure makes it very difficult for the corporate social responsibility team to manage their awareness programs. So, these programs need to be prioritized and monitored at directorial board levels.