Sunday, June 21, 2015

NASA - World is Draining Its Aquifers. What Do We Do When the Wells Run DRY?

As Congress attempts to keep NASA from doing earth sciences we got a major reminder why its work is so vital for our future. NASA satellites have been scanning the world's aquifers, our underground rivers that keep people supplied with drinking water and feed thirsty agriculture. It's findings are startling and should be setting off alarm bells worldwide. Those findings are here.

NASA has discovered that we are draining our aquifers DRY, worldwide, from California to the Middle East. Climate change and droughts are expected to make this situation even worse.

The panic won't set in until the wells run dry. When that happens it will be too late for millions of people who have no other source of water.  We can live without oil but we cannot live without water.  

Even the recent heavy rains in places like Texas won't help because most of the water runs off and gets flushed in the Gulf of Mexico. It  takes years for rains to recharge an aquifer - and we are using it much faster than the recharge rate.

Governments worldwide have pretty much ignored the problem, even as old wells run dry and deeper ones are dug to get more of the shrinking aquifers supplies.  

This is a global problem that will cause more disasters if not addressed immediately. American states need to have water plans as well -- but it is not happening. Even California continues to drain its aquifers, putting off the day of reckoning, which will surely come.

It is time to PLAN AHEAD. We could be forced to increase desalination capacity on a massive, worldwide scale -- but even that will take time that people won't have once the water is gone. Desalination is also energy intensive.  

Conservation is another option - but that alone is not a solution. But it needs to happen. It is crazy to water lawns with underground water that will run dry. There will come a day we wished we had saved it for drinking instead of giving it to our grass.

As I said, this is a GLOBAL threat coming our way. Our do nothing Congress is trying to deny us the information we need to plan ahead to avoid catastrophic human losses.  We must not let that happen. Our representatives need to spend time working with states and our global neighbors on solutions instead of waiting for another crisis to hit us upside the head. 

If you don't believe this is serious, turn off your water main for just one day -- and see what its like to have NONE.

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