Water Resources and Water Pollution. By: Alexa Bramski Kristen Conlin Emma Hollowell. Key Points in the US.
Water Resources and Water Pollution
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Water use in the U.S.: water used in the United States comes from groundwater and surface water. There are lakes and rivers that run through multiple states leading to disputes over water rights.
Colorado River Basin: The Colorado River flows through seven states and into a bit of Mexico. It is dammed six times, providing water for the areas. Because the land is so dry in this area, there is not enough water in the Colorado River to provide for the need.
California Water Project: A system that transports water all around California, solving the issue of who gets what water.
Great Lakes: composed of five lakes, the Great Lakes are shared by the United States and Canada. They are easily polluted by industries, cultural eutrophication, and other point and nonpoint sources.
Oxygen Depletion in Northern Gulf of Mexico: The Mississippi River basin empties into the Gulf of Mexico. Because of high fertilizer use and increased agriculture, the Oxygen Depletion Zone in the Gulf has grown increasingly.
Chesapeake Bay: The Chesapeake Bay is fed by water from six states, all polluting into their water. This estuary is highly polluted but has made progress in reducing the contamination.
Key Points in the World
Middle East Water Shortage: The Nile River, The Jordan River, and the Tigris-Euphrates River are shared by 10 countries in the middle east, all exhausting the water supply
Cochabamba, Bolivia: 60% of the water was being lost because of leaky pipes. Prices went up and people got angry because the city is too poor to fix the problem.
China’s Three Gorges Dam: The world’s largest hydroelectric dam and reservoir. This provides much needed water and power to China
Aral Sea Disaster: The Aral Sea is greatly over used and has dramatically shrunken from consumption. This has caused salt to be left behind and animal diversity to decline.
Floodplains in Bangladesh: major flooding occurs about every four years causing homes to be destroyed and erosion of land. The flooding has increased because of deforestation, overgrazing, population growth, and farming.
India’s Ganges River: The Ganges River is highly polluted because of people bathing, industries polluting, and Hindu religious activities such as pouring ashes in the river. This activity is called cultural eutrophication.
Key Points Miscellaneous
Ownership of freshwater: there is argument of whether water should be controlled by private companies or by public companies
Deep aquifers: Scientists propose using aquifers deep in the ground that contain water from millions of years ago as a water source
Natural Purification of sewage: Sewage is sent into a greenhouse where it is treated by bacteria and then sent through a physical barrier to separate the larger pieces. It then goes into aquarium tanks and is cleansed by zooplankton. Finally it goes through an artificial marsh and then purified using UV light. It is then safe enough to drink.
Arsenic in groundwater: Many people are drinking contaminated groundwater, mostly in East Asia. The arsenic can make people sick or kill them.
Protecting watersheds: By helping to protect watersheds, cities avoid having to build expensive water treatment plants