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Global impact of climate change on water resources

After air, water is probably the second-most abundant natural resource on earth. Not surprisingly, it is also the second-most critical element for humanity’s survival and progress. What happens though, when this vitally important element becomes scarce? If you’re imagining a scenario where suddenly a large amount of water just vanishes, that is not going to happen. What will definitely happen, however, is that the amount of water that you can use will dramatically reduce over the next few decades, if not sooner. If that has caught your attention, read on.

When we say “water that you can use”, we mean water that you can drink or use for agriculture or in factories etc. Obviously, this means that most of the water that’s available to us is out of the question, especially seawater. So even when we say that water covers more than two-thirds of the earth’s surface, the truth is that water is a rather limited resource which we need to use with utmost caution and frugality. If you are thinking as to what could endanger water availability, the (not so) obvious answer is “climate change” (or “global warming” as it is more popularly known). We know what you are thinking now. Isn’t climate change just about rising global temperature? What possible effect could it have on water availability? Now consider this - rising temperatures affect not just the atmosphere, it also changes weather patterns leading to irregular rainfall, random floods and disturbed groundwater levels due to changes in inflow. That should give you a better idea of the dire conditions that lie ahead of us and why water and climate change are inextricably linked with each other.

We can already see unseasonal rains and heavy floods in many areas around the world, including India in the past few years. When floods happen, they not only cause destruction of property and infrastructure, a lot of rich topsoil from the farmland gets washed away. This leads to reduced agricultural yields and even droughts during the following season. As you can guess, this leads to a spiralling negative effect on the economy. This is what a simple rise in temperature can end up doing. Add to this the fact that during the past 20 years, over 74% of all-natural disasters were water-related and the scale of the problem becomes apparent.

So what can we do to prevent/delay this from happening or reduce its effects? There is a lot we can do, including using water more responsibly. We at Bepure hope that you understand that water is life and we need to respect it more than we do.

To read more about Bepure’s take on water scarcity in India,
click here 👉 Water. Here today, gone tomorrow?

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