Houston, Texas (TFC)– As images and coverage relay from Houston, Americans are reminded of their country’s vulnerabilities. Hurricane Harvey is happening, its power and implications are impossible to ignore. It’s a testament to the forces guiding nature, and the fragile…
If freshwater is to remain a renewable resource, we must balance supply and demand on farms, in cities, in industry and in power production.
When you look to the year ahead, what do you see? Ensia recently invited eight global thought leaders to share their thoughts. In this interview with Ensia contributor Lisa Palmer, World Resources Institute Global Water Program director Betsy Otto responds to three questions: What will be the biggest challenge to address or opportunity to grasp in your field in 2017? Why? And what should we be doing about it now?
We continue to overspend our budget when it comes to freshwater resources globally. No country is immune; this is not just a challenge for arid regions.
When it comes to climate change, now is the time to react and develop defenses. Unfortunately, very few western resources are allocated to prepare for future environmental challenges. That’s not the case in areas inhabited by indigenous peoples, who’re already dealing with environmental changes. Recent months have seen adaptation techniques field tested in indigenous areas, for eventual use elsewhere. One of the many questions going forward, however, is whether progress itself is sustainable.
As important as the actual technologies is including as many voices as possible in climate conversations. Climate change affects humanity more than any war, or plague. In fact, grimmer predictions for the future suggest it may eventually cause those things. According to Glacier Hub, whereas indigenous peoples occupy 65% of earth’s land, they’re rarely included in climate debate.