Be a Water Advocate
As children we learned about the water cycle. Since then, we’ve often heard that Canada has a lot of freshwater.
In fact, we have 20% of the world’s supply. However, that number doesn’t reflect how much freshwater is useful.
“To be useful,” says the Government of Canada website, “water must be in a particular place and of a certain quality.” Suddenly that 20% is actually only 7%, although that’s still more than enough for a population of 36 million people.
With such abundance, water advocacy doesn’t seem necessary.
But did you know more than half of Canada’s freshwater drains north, leaving the supply in the south “heavily used and often overly stressed”?
In 2009, there was a high threat to water availability in parts of southern Canada when up to 40% of water in rivers was withdrawn for human use.
While a water crisis like Cape Town, South Africa, is unlikely, advocating for water’s health, abundance, safety and treatment, is nonetheless important. And there’s more ways than one to be an advocate for our most precious resource.
Being mindful of how much water we consume can help ensure more water is useful longer.
Personal conservation might involve:
- Leaving a bucket in your shower to catch water as it heats up. Once cooled, the water can be given to plants or pets
- Switching to a more efficient dishwasher and washing machine
- Taking shorter showers
- Landscaping with plants that don’t need a lot of water or replacing thirsty lawns with ornamental rock gardens
- Recycling greywater (water from bathing, laundry, cooking and dishes)
Preservation focuses on maintaining the source.
Pollution from municipal, industrial, and agricultural sources can put waterways and their associated ecosystems in jeopardy.
Sometimes the situation can be managed through physical measures, like a shoreline cleanup. Sometimes the situation needs to be addressed through collaboration. This may involve working with farmers, government and industry leaders to develop solutions that maintain and preserve the health of at-risk waterways. And sometimes the solution involves volunteering your time with one of the many important organizations that support our streams, lakes and rivers.
Recognizing a knowledge gap can lead to new ways of doing things.
For SanEcoTec®, the need for a sustainable water treatment that supports public health and the environment led to the creation of the AVIVE® Water Treatment.
No matter your preferred approach, Conversation is something we can all participate in.
In our digital world, conversation extends to social media. You can engage people by creating a page or account dedicated to water or simply by sharing your passion for water with friends and family on your personal accounts.
No matter how you choose to support water, there’s room enough for us all to be advocates.