Sustainability efforts continue to rise as awareness of the ecosystem’s demise becomes more of a global priority. Due to the increasing efforts, the need to identify the most effective plans of attack is also increasing. In terms of water sustainability, Will Sarni has identified three ways the course of water sustainability changed in 2017.
One of the most notable changes is the increasing efforts to more efficient tracking of water data. New public policies, like California’s “Open and Transparent Water Data Act,” require a statewide platform that combines various databases in order to provide the public with the most comprehensive water and ecological platform possible. The collaborative database highlights numerous issues, like water scarcity and climate change, that otherwise may go unnoticed. Other technological advances include more powerful sensors that track water quality, water usage, asset management, and water utility economics. The new technology can also provide a more accurate set of predictive analytics, keeping the public as updated as possible.
Although we are heading in a positive direction, certain large corporations continue to be huge contributors to the negative water usage. In an investigation by Christine MacDonald, Coca-Cola is identified as a huge source of false advertisement talking about its own sustainability efforts.
The company promised in an advertisement in The New York Times that “For every drop we use, we give one back.” Coca-Cola conducted a self assessment of their product which revealed that it took 35 Liters of water to make every half liter of Coke. The company promised in 2007 that its goal was to sustainably source 100% of key agricultural ingredients, but the follow through on this promise has been seriously lacking.
Coca-Cola isn’t the only offender of over using water. MacDonald reported that it takes 712 gallons of water to produce a single t-shirt and 462 gallons to produce a quarter-pound hamburger. People don’t realize how much water it takes even to produce the simplest of things. In the United States alone, the per capita Water Footprint is 2,060 gallons a day.
I thought your approach to this assignment was extremely clever! I really liked how you reflected on the use of water has changed throughout 2017. Based on these trends that you found, do yourself as over using water? have you thought of any ways that you personally want to reduce the amount of water you use and consume?
I think what California is attempting to do, represents a step that is necessary for many places across the United States to take in order to ensure clean drinking water. Also, I think you do a great job of exposing the corporate link to water consumption. Coca Cola and Mcdonald’s represent only two offenders on a list that spans dozens. Nestle for example, has been notorious for buying hundreds of millions of liters of clean drinking water for pennies on the dime. This sort of corporate greed when it comes to water consumption is something that is not widely discussed nor addressed. Great job bringing that to light!
I found your blog post super interesting and informative! I am shocked at Coca-cola’s wastefulness and that it takes so much water to only produce a half liter of their beverages. I also had no idea that tshirts needed water to be produced. It makes me wonder what other material things need water to get made because before reading this post I thought it was really just crops/food and things of that nature.
This makes me curious to compare the water footprint of nations who are more capitalistically inclined, versus countries who don’t integrate consumerism into their society as much as America. A comparative study looking a the amount of water consumed by each country and at what rates of consumerism and capitalism are present in the society might be in existence already and worth researching further.
I really liked your approach to this blog post. I liked that you gave specific examples of companies who can have a significant impact by paying more attention to their water usage. I also liked that you provided ways in which water sustainability measures have grown. The first step in solving a problem is accepting that you actually have a problem. The next: fixing it.