We are facing a world where our water supplies are increasingly being polluted, degraded and lost, yet at the same time droughts, floods, sea level-rise and population increases threaten the livelihoods of millions. Companies everywhere need to reduce their water use and mitigate the risk of severely reduced supply. Does your company have a strategy and an action plan?
- Human use and pollution of freshwater resources have reached a level where the sustainability of water resources is threatened and the resulting water scarcity and water quality degradation will potentially limit food production.
- Water shortages will affect many areas of the United States and the world.
- In a world where gigantic states (California) and megacities (Sao Paulo, Brazil) are suffering from drought and water scarcityproblems are expected to become still worse in the decades ahead.
- The threat of air and water pollution from manufacturing that uses natural gas as a feedstock is very clear.
- Two-thirds of the world’s largest companies acknowledging that they are exposed to water-related risks.
- The amount of water available per person will decrease by 60 percent.
- Oceans are growing so warm and acidic that fisheries could be lost.
- Economic loss risk to floods and cyclones in OECD countries is growing faster than GDP per capita.
- Rainfall and temperature changes will affect wheat growth.
- Climate change negatively will affect water resources worldwide in the long term.
- The huge extent of the aquifers in Greenland means the waterstored inside the glaciers there could potentially offset sea level rise.
- In Washington State and in California, new storm water regulations will require measures to prevent storm water pollutioninto the environment.
- Streams in the Mediterranean, the USA, Central America and Southeast Asia are at risk.
- Sea level rise is projected to add two feet of water globally by mid-century.
- As the Florida water table rises salt water intrusion will further contaminate freshwater supplies.
- As more marginal lands are converted to production agriculture in order to meet increasing demands, drought tolerance and salt tolerance are becoming highly sought-after traits.
- Increasing water infiltration rates will capture water to support crop growth while reducing flooding and erosion.
- Egypt’s days of relying on most of the Nile’s water reaching its territory could be numbered.
- Warmer water temperatures will cause the oceans to expand.
- More cities will effectively become ‘tidal’-in the sense they’ll allow water in and then control the flooding.
- The severe and ongoing depletion of underground water supplies in India poses a growing threat to the nation’s food security.
- There will be an estimated 9 billion people in the world in the next 35 years increasing the demand for water and food by around 30%.
- Concerns over water are mobilizing ‘Fracktivist’ movements worldwide.
- Warmer temperatures and drought increase the risk of violent conflict around the world.
- Additional social instability could result if water availabilitydecreases to the point where current farming practices are no longer profitable.
- The necessary focus on water treatment, management,infrastructure and supply could lead to a water market worth over $1 trillion by 2020.
- Toilet, sinks, baths and showers will understand when to conserve and how much water to use when flushing.
- Hot countries that lack fresh water could harness solar power for desalinating and pumping water.
- The downside of global warming will drive innovation in the use of specialist irrigation, water recovery and urban food productionas farmland is stressed by increased temperatures, droughts and floods.
- There is a risk of permanent depletion from areas where water is abstracted.
- Fundamental changes to the systems of production and consumption will be needed in order to meet the EU goal of ‘living well within the limits of the planet’ by 2050.
- The management of social and environmental risks such as waterrelated risks is key to ensuring a sustainable long-term productionbase for producers of alcoholic beverages.
- As precipitation patterns change across the US so will water re-charge rates.
- Without a major increase in investment for infrastructure many countries will struggle to meet the targets.
- An increase in the number of adequately trained water professionals will be needed to efficiently expand water supply and sanitation, increase water efficiency, adopt water rights and improve resilience to water-related disasters.
To find the sources and more resources on Shaping Tomorrow about the future of sensors some of which were used in this Trend Alert. View Water, Water, Everywhere.
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