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IN 2070

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Document published in the magazine "Crónica de los Tiempos" April 2002.

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We are in the year 2070.

I just turned 50 years old, but I look 85.

I experience major kidney problems, because I drink very little water.

I think that I don’t have much more time to live.

Today, I am the oldest person living in this society.

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I remember, when I was 5 years old

everything was very different.

There were lots of trees in the parks, houses had beautiful gardens, and I could enjoy long baths and stay in the shower for one whole hour.

Now, we have to clean ourselves by using disposable towelettes moisturized with mineral oil.

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Before, women were proud of their beautiful hair.

Now, we have to shave our head to keep it clean without using water.

Before, my father used to wash his car with water that came out of a hose.

Today, children find it hard to believe that one ever could use water to perfom such a task.

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I remember the many warnings: ”DON’T WASTE WATER”But nobody paid attention.

People assumed that water was unlimited.

 Today, rivers, dams, lagoons, and under-ground water are all

either irremediably polluted or completely dried up.

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The landscape that surrounds us has turned into nothing more than an immense desert.

Gastro-intestinal infections, and skin and urinary tract diseases have now become the main causes of death.

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Industry is paralysed, and the jobless rate reached a dramatic level. Desalination plants are the main employers.

They give one drinking water instead of a salary.

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People are constantly being mugged for water on the deserted streets.

80% of the food is synthetic.

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Before, it was recommended that an adult drink 8 glasses of water a day.

Today, I am allowed only half a glass.

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Since we cannot wash our clothes, we throw them, which increases the amount of trash.

We had to go back to using septic tanks, just like in the past century, because the sewage system stopped working due to the lack of water.

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People look scary: their bodies are weak; parched by extreme dehydration; covered by sores caused by ultraviolet rays that the atmosphere can no longer filter since the ozone layer is depleted.

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Due to the dryness of her skin, a young 20 year-old woman looks more like 40.

 Scientists perform all types of research and investigations, but there is no solution in sight.

We cannot produce water.

The lack of trees reduces the amount of oxygen available, which in turn lowers the intellectual quotient of up-coming generations.

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The morphology of many individuals’ spermatozoa was altered...

…which results in children being born with all sorts of deficiencies, mutations and malformations.

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The government even makes us pay a tax for the air we breathe: 137 m3 per adult per day. [31,102 gallons]

Those who can’t pay the tax are expulsed from the “ventilated areas” that are equipped with gigantic mechanical lungs, powered by solar energy.

The air supplied in the “ventilated areas” is not of very good quality, but at least one can breathe there.

The average age is 35.

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Some countries succeeded in preserving a few islands of vegetation with their own streams. These areas are closely monitored by the army.

Water has become a rare commodity, a highly sought after treasure, infinitely more valuable than gold or diamonds.

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Here, though, there are no more trees because it hardly ever rains. And whenever it does rain, it is acid rain that comes down.

There are no more seasons. Climatic changes such as the greenhouse effect and the polluting activities we indulged in during the twentieth century took care of that.

We were warned about the need to take care of our environment, but nobody bothered.

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When my daughter asks me to tell her how it was when I was young, I describe the beauty of the forests.

I tell her about the rain, about the flowers, about how pleasurable it was to bathe, to fish in the rivers and the lakes, and being able to drink as much water as one desired.

I tell her about how healthy people used to be.

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She asks me:

- Daddy! Why is there no water anymore ?

I feel a lump in my throat...

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I can’t help feeling guilty, because I belong to the generation that completed the destruction of our environment by simply not taking seriously any of the warnings ... and there were so many of them!

I belong to the last generation who could have made a difference, but who chose not to act.

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Quite frankly, I think that, within short, life on this Earth will no longer be possible, because the destruction of our environment reached its point of no return.

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How I wish I could go back in time and get the Human race to understand this ...

... at a time when it was still possible for us to do something to save our planet Earth!

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Send this letter to all your contacts and contribute, even if it is only by a fraction, to the necessary global awareness on the water issue. This is no game, it is already our reality. Do it for your children; if you don’t have any yet, maybe you will some day. Don’t leave them hell as a legacy ... Leave them life!

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