Thursday, May 22, 2014

Fresh Water--and Threats to It (think "Fracking")!

Here in Northeast Ohio we don't fret too much about water. We are the Saudi Arabia of water. We have Lake Erie as our northern border, and we have many rivers and literally hundreds of creeks throughout our area. We get anywhere from 35 to 50 (or more!) inches of rain every year. How could there be a problem? How could there be a threat?

Well, there are gigantic threats--some here right now, and some on the horizon, not that far away. One threat is that we have something that other people desperately want and need. I'm thinking of California, with its historic state-wide drought, leading to terrible forest fires. California has over 38,000,000 residents--by far the heaviest populated state in the nation. This one state has a higher population than most of the countries in Europe. It also has a huge agriculture industry, with a tremendous need for water. California is desperate for water. Where is that water going to come from? Oh, just thought of something! Fracking (hydraulic fracturing) is going on in California. This takes huge amounts of water, and then removes it from the water cycle forever. That's water that will never again be used by humans--gone forever. So California needs water for people, for industry, for agriculture--and now for fracking. Something's gonna give!

Fracking poses a gigantic risk to Ohio's fresh water (and the the fresh water of all the states where fracking will take place). The risk is actually global; fracking will eventually affect all the world's supply of fresh water, a very precious and limited resource. At some point, I have no doubt that wars will be fought over fresh water.

[this will be expanded later today and tomorrow]

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