By Marg Evans
Special to The Tribune
For the last five years, the Water Wise program in Williams Lake and the surrounding area has been teaching students in our area the value of our local water supply and ways to conserve it.
They have dressed up as H20 molecules, seen working models of aquifers, learned about watersheds, taken tours of the City water and sewage systems and tested water quality in the Williams Lake River.
One of the Water Wise modules teaches about water use in other parts of the world, and with World Water Day on March 22 here are some water facts that readers might find interesting:
The average African survives on 10 litres of water a day.
The average European uses 400 litres, while the average North American consumes 600 litres per day.
In more than half of the world’s households, the water haulers (usually women and children) must walk six-to-eight kilometres to collect water.
They can easily spend five hours a day fetching water.
An estimated 1.1 billion people worldwide have no access to clean drinking water.
An estimated 2.4 billion people worldwide have no sanitation.
Every day, 14,000 people die worldwide, because the water they drink contains untreated sewage or dangerous chemicals.
One million children die each year from diarrhea passed by dirty water and unsanitary conditions.
More than half of hospital beds worldwide are filled with people suffering from water-bourne disease.
Two out of five people in the world will never experience a clean glass of drinking water.
It is predicted that within the next 15 to 40 years, wars will be fought over access to water supplies.
And one fact to ponder:
Leaving on the faucet twice a day while brushing your teeth can waste approximately 10 litres of water, more than the total daily water supply that many people world-wide exist on.
Here in Canada, we often take our clean drinking water for granted.
We are very fortunate in Williams Lake to have a clean source of water in our underground aquifer. However, it is not a limitless supply, and every resident has an important role to play to help preserve and protect this resource for the well-being of future generations.
Visit the Water Wise website at www.ccconserv.org for Water Wise suggestions and tips, and drop by the RBC/Royal Bank in Williams Lake on World Water Day, today, March 22 for demonstrations on a mini-aquifer, more water saving tips and Xeriscape gardening information.
The Water Wise program is brought to you by the Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society in partnership with the City of Williams Lake and Fisheries and Oceans Canada.