Stop Using up All Our Water!

By: Ruth Ziegler

Water For Life!

All humans and animals need water to survive. Most of earth is made up of water, although most of Earth’s water is salt water and is not safe to drink. Most of Earth’s freshwater is unreachable, it is frozen and locked up in ice caps and glaciers. Most freshwater is not used for drinking, it is used for irrigation and other purposes. The increase in population requires more food, water, and manufactured foods. Earth’s fresh water resources are being depleted. Pollution is another major problem across the globe, freshwater is tainted by a wide variety of polluting materials include paints, pesticides, petroleum, plastics, and heavy metals such as leads and coppers. Burning fossil fuels such as gasoline, coal, and natural gas also threatens our freshwater supply. Extended droughts caused by global warming are drying up lakes, rivers, and aquifers. Wars in nations are rising like in Egypt and Sudan where they are struggling over control of the Nile river. Water is an important necessity for human survival.

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Figure A

Fracking operations go on at night in the hills of a Mesa Vista Ranch that is

68,000-acre in an attempt to get natural gas and oil out of the ground. The oil company is forcing chemicals into the ground contaminating the water in the Ogallala Aquifer to get the natural gas and oil out of the ground.

Get it Before it's Gone.

Changing the water under our feet. One of the major problems is the Ogallala is drying up. Some of the reasoning behind that is that people are using up all the water for irrigation and household purposes. Big businesses are threatening the future of the cleanliness of the water in the Ogallala Aquifer. The aquifer's only natural recharge comes from rain and snow. Less than half an inch of all the precipitation reaches the aquifer in any giving year, but we are allowed to pump out over 30 times that amount.

The what, where, and why.

The overuse and pollution by companies in the midwestern states cause a decrease in the water supply. In figure B it shows the red is the decline of more than 40 feet and so on and so forth. The Ogallala is in the states Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska. The Keystone XL pipeline wanted to bore a hole in the ground of a local farmers land, to get oil out, but they were going to contaminate the water in the Aquifer. The water is being overused, and wasted on corn. A crop that needs lots of water, more than the amount that we get every year.
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Figure B

The Ogallala is in the states Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska. This figure shows the decrease in water level in the Ogallala. The red is the decline of more than 40 feet , the orange is 20 to 40 feet, the yellow orange is 10 to 20 feet, and the yellow is 6 to 10 feet, the pink is the rise of over 40 feet, the blue is 20 to 40 feet, the light blue is 10 to 20 feet, the green is 5 to 10 feet, the gray doesn't change. The areas that were the most affected by the decline in water level were northern parts of Texas, and southern parts of Kansas.

We all need it but can't have it.

Using water in one place makes us suffer in another. We are going to run out of water in this generation or the next, at the rate of water usage we have just a small amount of time until the water is just a puddle in the ground. The farmers in Kansas are wasting the water on corn a thirsty crop that soaks up the precipitation. Farmers also spray pesticides on their crops, it is used to kill bugs and weeds, but it also is very poisonous to humans, it soaks into the ground and contaminates the water in the Ogallala.

Can we fix it? Yes we Can

Do more than nothing. The government could intervene and tell farmers to only use a certain amount of water. The oil companies and the government are one in the same because they both are centered around money, and pride. Another way to help fix the Ogallala water problem is to reroute the big oil company pipelines. By rerouting the oil pipelines the oil companies could still have what they wanted and the water in the Ogallala could be saved. The oil companies should be rerouting the pipelines and not asking farmers to bore a hole in their ground.