For once there are no differences between countries of the “first” and the “third” world. Ones and others are vulnerable to the world crisis of the water and, though from different form, all of them suffer problems as the overexploitation of resources, the pollution of water sources, and the climatic alterations that they sharpen the periods of drought. A report of the World Fund for the Nature (WWF/Adena) revises the threats that hover over the water masses of the rich world, and gives examples of countries as Spain and Australia where the proliferation of reservoirs and regulatory works they do not solve the water chronic shortage largely of the respective territory.

All the years when the World Week of the Water (This year celebrated from August 22 to August 26) is celebrated, it is remembered that the squandering is only one of the factors that come together in the water “poverty” of the developed countries. For instance, a Saharan consumes of average among 10 and 20 liters of water a day, opposite to the 200 of an European or 350 liters per capita in the USA and Japan. The bad use of the water, the loss of wetlands, the disappearance of glaciers, the deforestation, the change in the bosses of the rains for the global warming and the emission of greenhouse gases join, in addition, the “irrational” belief in the hydrological infrastructures as universal panacea.
The examples of a deficient use of the water and the decrease of the water resources are countless. For example, Houston (USA) and Sydney (Australia), two of the cities “thirstiest” of the world, have very top levels of consumption at the level of its recharges of the reservoirs. In London, the leaks due to the antiquity and the deterioration of the network of supply squander the equivalent one to daily 300 Olympic swimming pools.
France faces the third episode of drought in four years, and in Australia, the driest inhabited continent of the world, the saltion of the sources of sweet water threatens agricultural zones fix for the supply of the country, as we have seen in class. While, emergent economies like China, Brazil or India bet for the construction of faraonic infrastructures without a real evaluation of the water needs nether its costs.

The economic wealth is not translated in galore water. The water has to be used in a more efficient way in the whole world because the shortage and the pollution grow and the responsibility of finding solutions rests both in the rich countries and in the poor ones. For this reason, developed countries try to put more emphasis in finding a solution as they are being aware (finally) that is not a trouble of poor countries like Africa. It`s a pity that they take care about this problem now, but until the world still being a world they will be differences between this two worlds.

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Posted in economic development, water
  1. jeremy says:

    I enjoyed reading this blog. One point you mentioned regarding some countries coming up with outlandish projects to address their water problems particularly resonated with me. In India, for example, there has been talk of redirecting rivers; an idea that the Spanish government also flirted with I understand. This, in my opinion, is arrogance in the extreme. Humankind has to learn that it must coexist with nature – we can’t control it.

  2. adrian says:

    Me too, I am wondering why „we“ still try to control nature. It does not have to be as extreme as the redirection of a river. Just take all the rivers that have been straightened. At first glance, it seems like man has taken control over the water flow and in doing so reduced the risk of flooding. But, finally, that risk is even increased since man has taken away the natural retention ponds (?). In case of a higher water line, people and their belongings are immediately affected since the watersides are urbanised.

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