Monday, September 13, 2010
Water...the blue gold of the next millennium
I was impacted by the Cinemax showing of this documentary "Flow...For Love of Water" which can now be viewed on demand from YouTube starting with part one as linked above.
We hear and read a lot about climate change, ecology issues from deforestation and strip mining everywhere...but comparatively few see very little coverage of what I think is THE ecology issue of our times...WATER SUPPLY.
We consistently complain and worry about the prices and supply of oil and gas related to our economies and cost of living...yet we don't flinch at buying a pint of bottled water for $2 in some stores. The primary driver of this phenomenon is our concern over drinking clean water as we recognize that our world's water supply is becoming more and more toxic by the hour.
Having grown up in the "Great Lakes" state of Michigan...my life has been blessed with tremendous times spent fishing, boating, skiing and just looking out over beautiful fresh lakes and streams. While I don't mind walking the fine ocean beaches you find in Florida, the Caribbean or California...I still prefer the fresh air of "sweet water"...the stuff you can drink, swim, and frolic in without being covered with salt and saline. I've tasted a lot of desalinated water from the oceans, but you can't beat the purity and good taste of mineralized sweet water from a lake or stream.
Of course, from the business side we all now know that waterfront lands, whether salt or fresh water, is always going up in price. Waterfront or view is a given as the most secure land investment one can make. I have acted on that. Yet, as this film so effectively depicts, our world's water supplies are now being controlled and affected by somewhat sinister forces and organizations that supersede our "ownership" of waterfront properties.
What God took a few million years to put into natural flow and motion, men and nations have now changed all of that for some pretty selfish concerns. I believe what I have read from many sources...that our world has millions who are hungry and thirsty NOT because of shortages of water or food, but simply because of manipulated distribution issues and hording for a few.
As this film points out so vividly, millions of people are being displaced every decade or so by huge conglomerates and countries who are "damming up" various rivers and lakes to divert water from one source to another. While there are a number of examples of positive effects and progressive results from this (such as the Panama Canal)...there are also hideous examples of taking from many to give to a few. And of course, history is full of wars and conflicts over watered lands and regions.
I will let this movie speak for itself...but I challenge every rational one of us to keep an eye on this subject and speak and act out where we can on protecting the quality and "ownership" issues of the world's water supply and quality. It's not that we have less of it...water is totally recycling...but we have less quality and uneven distribution of such in this shrinking world we live in. My parents brought me up with a solid respect for conservancy and responsible care-taking of nature. My Mom and Step dad were heavily involved in conservancy organizations throughout Michigan...and I am proud of them for that. Unfortunately, most of the world is naive and complacent about water...possibly the most important product of nature in life...the foundation of our whole food chain.
Here is a quote that struck me recently..."a lot of people live without love, but I don't know anyone that survived living without water...". Yet, we now live in a world where BAD water is the root cause for millions of deaths. Our pollution of the water and food chain are killing us faster than all the wars combined. What are we going to do about it? Water weighs heavily in my investment strategy in this life...and responsibility for clean and distributed water should be at the core of our moral fiber.