The Earth is getting warmer because human activities are adding heat-trapping gases to the atmosphere, mainly through burning fossil fuels. Warmer temperatures are causing changes around the world, like glacial melting and stronger storms.
DID YOU KNOW?
Worldwide, an estimated 768 million people do not have access to an improved source of water. In 2014, UN Water stated: “Water scarcity already affects almost every continent and more than 40 percent of the people on our planet. By 2025, 1.8 billion people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity, and two-thirds of the world’s population could be living under water stressed conditions.” The economic benefits of achieving universal access to sanitation and drinking water have been estimated at US$171 billion per year
Module 8: Water and Planet
“Swarovski Waterschool is like a torch lighting up the road to water conservation. I would like to say to all the kids on earth that we should save the water environment. If not, the last drop of water will be our tear” – Chen Siyu, 10, schoolgirl, province of Yunnan
All of the water on our planet is connected to all forms of life in one way or another, as we have experienced throughout the activities and information presented in this teaching and learning resource.
This module focuses on bringing the elements of water on Earth together as a catalyst for cooperation. Two-thirds of the world’s major rivers are shared by several countries. In the past hundred years, the world population has tripled, while demand for water has increased sevenfold. The signs of a looming water crisis are showing in many parts of the world. Since water is essential to every aspect of life, this crisis affects everything – from health to human rights, the environment to the economy, poverty to politics, and culture to conflict. Just as water defies political boundaries, the crisis is also well beyond the scope of any individual country or sector and cannot be dealt with in isolation.
There is a growing concern that rapid population expansion and human activities have an impact on the Earth’s natural systems, causing damage to ecosystems that places human survival in danger.
This is a measure of how fast we consume resources and generate waste compared to how fast nature can absorb our waste and regenerate ecosystems.