Talk for Article "‘Race against time’ to fix unequal water supply, says leading activist"

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    I intend to put Barlow’s books high up on my reading list. There seems to be so much to ask her. Can we expect more from this interview?

    We should revisit this headline, especially the use of “dwindling water supply.” As I understand it, the amount of available water is not dwindling in the same sense as an element dwindles when mankind uses it – e.g., gold, oil, uranium, copper, etc. In fact, Earth has the same amount of water now that it had at the time of the “Big Bang.” The important questions are how to access the water and get it where it is needed.

    That is not to say that conservation of water is unimportant. Quite the opposite is true. And people who live in drought-stricken areas and whose reservoirs are low certainly see the water supply “dwindling.”

    But use of “dwindling supply” seems misleading, even just for a headline. My water supply comes from Lake Michigan, one of the Great Lakes in the Midwestern United States. So this area probably will not have a water supply problem any time soon. But anything I conserve here doesn’t help the people in drought-stricken Las Vegas or parts of Australia.

    “Dwindling water supply” unfortunately happens around the globe. But it is still a local issue, and solving the problem of short supply requires local initiative. The local problem might be caused by climate change, unexpected or unplanned-for population growth, or war, or some other local phenomenon.

    Anyway, I suggest we refrain from using “dwindling water supply.” That leaves the impression — incorrectly, I think — that there is less water now than before. Unless Barlow is really saying that, then how about a headline like: “Drought Around The Globe Threatens Local Populations”?

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