We all know water quality is important; but there are some not so obvious reasons that make this the case. Of course, humans rely on it to drink, but we seldom think that water plays a part in us eating too. This liquid provides the nutrition needed for plants and animals to grow and produce the food we consume every day. Beyond that, here are a few of the most important the reasons clean water is something you should care about.
It Can Be the Difference Between Sick and Healthy
Firstly, people require clean water to live. Polluted water isn’t just “dirty”—it can actually be deadly. Despite being considered a basic human right by the United Nations, around 1.8 million people around the world die from contaminated diarrheal diseases and illnesses such as cholera, while tens of millions become extremely sick from water-related ailments, many of which are avoidable.
It Brings People Together Through Goals
Providing clean drinking water was one of the millennium development goals set out by the World Health Organization (WHO), which would hopefully be met by 2015. WHO reported that the target for drinking water was met ahead of schedule, although sanitation was still not met by about 700 million people. The Clean Water Act also makes “any discharge of any pollutant” from a point source into federal ocean waters unlawful without a permit from the Environmental Protection Agency. The issue with unsanitized water is not only that it is undrinkable, wasted water, but the amount of bacteria in it is a health concern for the public. To remedy this, the Sanitation Safety Planning initiative has been put in place to process more wastewater, excreta and greywater into drinkable water.
It Keeps Us Hydrated and Full
Clean water is also essential for food production. Humans require massive amounts of water to produce even 1 kg of food staples like bread (1,608 L), cheese (3,178 L) and rice (2,497 L). And of course, like people, all animals require clean water to grow healthy and strong. In relation to aquaculture, this is particularly true considering that fish (like Tilapia from Mexico, Honduras or Indonesia) spend their lives in large floating lake pens surrounded by water—meaning the cleaner the water, the healthier the fish (for its own sake and for human consumption). Companies like Regal Springs who sell lake grown, all-natural Tilpaia to Costco, Kroger, Walmart and other retailers perform consistent water testing to ensure that the surrounding lake water is always at its peak quality.
It’s Essential—For Everything
Sure, it sounds cliché, but water really needed for everything. It keeps our lawns green, it allows us to make our favorite coffee or tea, it helps provide the most basic things we take for granted (like having flush toilets or taking a shower). Even beyond personal or household use, water is used and needed everywhere. It’s a basic need that everyone should have the right to, making it important for everyone to care about. It’s not just something we should think about when there’s a drought—water is a resource we need to protect.
There are a variety of reasons why keeping our waters clean and drinkable should be a priority for every one of us. Not only do we as humans rely on clean water to live full, happy lives, but so does the rest of our ecosystem. If we hope to have a healthy future for our friends, families and environment, finding ways to preserve the safe, clean water we have while efficiently recycling the grey and wastewater we create is vital.
Photo credit: Designer Pics