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Water Shortage Projections

This Magazine Staff

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The center for Environmental Systems Research at the University of Kassel, Germany, just released a comprehensive mapping system outlining areas that may experience high levels of water shortage stress in the next seven or so decades. These suggestions about projected per-capita water availability follow on the heels of a wealth of new books on the subject over the last few years including Water: The fate of our most precious resource (2003) by Marq De Villiers; Maude Barlow’s Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water (2007); and Vandana Shiva’s Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution, and Profit (2002).

These expectations are based on projections about future temperature and rainfall changes; economic and societal changes; and population growth. Projections of this kind by their nature can never claim unerring accuracy, but the implications remain grim and suggest a need for more awareness about the future of this resource worldwide.

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