Water Scarcity Essay in 500 Words
Water scarcity means a lack of sufficient water supplies available to meet water consumption demands in an area. Water stress, water shortages and water crises are all involved. While the concept of water stress is relatively newer, it is challenging to obtain fresh water sources to use over the long term.
It could lead to further depletion and deterioration of the existing water resources. Water shortages could be caused by a change in climates, such as changing weather patterns, including droughts or floods.
Water scarcity can come as a result of two mechanisms: the physical (absolute) shortage of water and the economic shortage of water where the physical shortages of natural water supplies are a result of inadequate natural water resources to meet the needs of one country, and the economic shortage of water due to poor management of adequate water resources available.
Though water is a renewable resource, it is a finite resource at the same time. The world’s total amount of water is the same as it was two thousand years ago. It is essential to realise that only 3% of the world’s water is fresh and approximately 1/3rd of it is inaccessible.
The remaining proportions are distributed quite unevenly, and the available resources are rapidly polluted from manufacturing, agriculture, etc. Growing populations, rising industrialisation, expanding farming and growing living standards have, over the years, increased water demand.
Causes of Water Scarcity
The shortage of water is mostly a human-made activity because of excess population growth and water resources mismanagement. Some of the critical reasons for water shortages are:
Inefficient use of water for agriculture: India belongs to the world’s leading producers of farm products, and therefore the consumption of water for irrigation is amongst the highest. Traditional irrigation technology causes the most considerable loss of water due to evaporation, runoff, percolation, water distribution and over-use of groundwater.
As more areas are subjected to conventional irrigation methods, the stress for water available for other purposes will continue. The solution lies in a broad application of micro-irrigation methods, including drips and sprinklers irrigation.
Reduction in traditional water recharging areas: Rapid development is ignoring the conventional bodies of water that have also been a source of groundwater recovery. Traditional aquifers must urgently be rekindled, and new ones must be implemented.
Sewage and wastewater drainage into traditional water bodies: Government intervention is urgently needed at the source to address this problem.
Release of chemicals and effluents into rivers, streams and ponds: Government, NGOs and social activists must track and implement legislation strictly to prevent the release of harmful chemicals and effluents into the water bodies.
Lack of on-time de-silting in large water systems which can increase the potential for monsoon water storage is another reason for the scarcity of water. Shockingly, governments at state levels have not taken this up on priority as an annual practice. This alone will add considerably to the storage levels of water.
Another reason is the failure to ensure efficient water management and distribution to urban consumers, agriculture and industry. The Government needs to increase its development investment and engage all stakeholders on the planning stage to make sure available resources are optimised.
Rising concretisation due to urban growth that has chocked groundwater sources has exacerbated the problem. Water is not recharged or stored in ways that make its use efficient while retaining the natural ingredients of water.
Besides, it severely reduces the availability of drinking water through the entry of waste and industrial waste into water systems. In these areas, marine life is already mostly extinct. This is the source of an emerging crisis that is very serious. We can never find sustainable solutions if we do not understand the source of the problem.
Solutions to Overcome Water Scarcity Problems
There is a large amount of water lost during the washing of the dishes at home. Our methods of washing dishes must be modified, and the habit of water running must be reduced. A small step here can make substantial water savings.
The priority must be given to improvements in water infrastructure as water conservation, and efficiency is critical elements in sustainable water management.
Solar desalination and intelligent irrigation systems are strong examples of clean technology for water efficiency and control. That applies even more to the agriculture and farming sector – the largest consumer of water.
The irrigation of rainwater and the treatment of wastewater often eliminates shortages and decreases stresses on land and other natural water bodies.
Groundwater refuelling, which allows surface water to flow to groundwater, is a popular mechanism for avoiding water shortages. The water gets contaminated with pathogens and becomes unsafe for drinking without adequate sanitation.
This is why water quality needs to be discussed, assessed and controlled. Also, upgrading the sanitation systems in specific areas is an appropriate way to prevent water scarcity from becoming any worse.
Water crisis management education is crucial. It is necessary to drastically amend all consumption types, from individual users to the supply chains of large corporations, in order to cope with potential water shortages.
The population of humans has almost doubled over the last 50 years. With its subsequent economic development and industrialisation, this rapid growth has changed the world’s water resources and caused significant biodiversity loss.
Today, 41% of the world’s population lives in water-stressed river basins. Water supply issues grow as the consumption of fresh water continues to be unsustainable.
Therefore, conserving water resources is the need of the hour; otherwise, there will not be enough water left for our future generations.