Topic 5: The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity

Responses to Rising Demand

Managing water supplies will require action at a variety of levels. Likely actions include: Hard engineering projects to increase water storage and transfer. Restoration of lost water supplies. Water conservation in urban areas, such as rainwater harvesting and water...

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Water Technology

case study: china’s south north transfer project Project began in 2003 and involves building 3 canals to run across the eastern, middle and western parts of China and link the country’s 4 main rivers.       Benefits Costs §  Transfer 44.8 billion m3 per...

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Water Geopolitics

Often when countries compete for water resources international agreements and treaties have to be drawn up on how best to manage shared water supplies. As water resources become more significant, new treaties have to be negotiated using water diplomacy. Unfortunately,...

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Trends in Water Demand

By 2025, water withdrawal is projected to reach 5,235km3 per year, which is to impact on food production, human welfare and the environmental. Any predictions are tentative as they involve uncertain factors such as climate change. three alternative futures Scenario...

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Water Supply Problems

Secure water supplies are needed to support irrigation and food production, manufacturing and energy generation. However, the use of water resources can lead to various problems. E.g. the depletion of underground aquifers and salinization of the soil. case study: the...

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Water Conflicts

Water conflicts occur when the demand for water overtakes the supply and several stakeholders wish to use the same resource. Conflict is more likely where developing countries are involved as water is vital to feed their growing populations and promote industrial...

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Human Impacts on Water Availability

Human activity can have a negative effect on the water environment: Sewage disposal in developing countries is expected to cause 135 million deaths by 2020. In the UK we add 1,400 million litres of sewage to our rivers daily although most of it has been treated...

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Access to Water

Water insecurity: not having access to sufficient, safe water. There are 2.3 billion people without access to clean water, many live in 20 or so developing countries classified as ‘water scarce’. Problems of water insecurity are related to: Availability – having a...

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The Water Poverty Index

Established in 2002 and uses 5 parameters: Resources – the quantity of surface and groundwater per person, and its Access – the time and distance involved in obtaining sufficient and safe Capacity – how well the community manages its Use – how economically water is...

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Physical Factors Affecting Water Supply

Drainage density: The density of rivers and streams in each area. Discharge: The rate of water flow in a river. Impermeable: Rock or soil which will not transmit water. River regime: The variation in annual river discharge. Aquifer: underground porous rock which will...

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Water Sources

Aquifer: underground porous rock which will hold groundwater and let it through. Ground water: all water found under the surface of the ground which is not chemically combined with any minerals present, but not including underground streams. Irrigation: the supply of...

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Fresh Water Supply is a Finite Resource

World’s oceans hold approx. 1,386 million km3 of water. Accounts for 97.5% of global water source. Only 2.5% of store is available as fresh water. Almost 80% of freshwater is trapped in ice, snow, and permafrost. Remaining 20% of freshwater is groundwater. Only 1%...

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Water Stress

Water stress: Lack of reliable, cost effective water supplies in a region. Water stress occurs when demand for water exceeds the amount available during a certain period, or when poor quality restricts its use. Therefore, when a country’s water consumption is more...

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The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity Definitions

Abstraction: Removal of water from rivers, lakes, canals, reservoirs or from underground strata. Inputs: Ways in which water can get into the system. Store: Ways of storing water in a drainage basin. Output: Ways in which water can leave the system. Flow: Mechanisms...

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EQ 1: What is the Geography of Water Supply and Demand?

Know how water supply is controlled by physical factors, within the hydrological cycle. Explain the supply –v- demand balance in specific locations and how this is changing. Explore human degradation of supply by over-abstraction/ saltwater incursion and other forms...

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