March 22 was World Water Day, and many individuals, not-for-profits, and institutions took the day to think about our water, its health, and its availability. Many of us take for granted the availability of clean water; the sobering truth about the scarceness of the resource in areas throughout the world was brought to light in a U.S. intelligence community assessment on global water security.
The report estimates that many areas around the world are likely to see future increases in water shortages, polluted water, and floods. The report concludes that these events are likely to increase the possibility of conflict among nations within the next 10 years.
Additionally, the report indicates that between now and 2040, fresh water availability will not keep up with demand if water resources are not more efficiently managed. Currently, 2.5% of the world’s water is fresh water, of which approximately 70% is withdrawn for agricultural purposes. The report specifically indicates agriculture water management as an area of concern. “We judge that during the next 10 years the depletion of groundwater supplies in some agriculture area…will pose a risk to both national and global food markets.” Increased pressure from water scarcity is also likely to affect energy production and water quality, which can lead to a multitude of health and disease concerns.
Like many other natural resource issues, global availability of clean water is a problem that cannot be solved overnight. It will take many years of effort from our best and brightest researchers, scientists, and engineers. We all know the importance of water conservation in our daily lives, but we can help solve this problem another way: encourage our children to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). ms consultants is proud to be part of this effort to interest youth in STEM careers by offering Engineer-for-a-Day programs to both high school and college students.
Interested in doing more to conserve water resources or encourage interest in STEM careers? Visit the United State Environmental Protection Agency’s online resource for water conservation or the STEM Education Coalition website.
To learn more about ms consultants’ advocacy of STEM education and careers, including our efforts in job shadowing and involvement with STEM advisory councils, please contact Monica Mosure at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.