Sunday, July 6, 2008

Water, Water, Everywhere...

...And that's the problem.

I live in Georgia. We've been living with drought conditions for a few years now. It's dry enough that Lake Lanier, the lake that provides water for much of the state south of Gainesville, is down some thirteen feet. People who had homes with waterfront find themselves suddenly posessed of extra yards to mow.

I have long tried to be aware of my water usage, even before the drought. I've been known to turn off the shower to soap up, turn it on to rinse, off to condition my hair (hey, it's down to my bum, it needs conditioning or I'll blister the paint with my profanity while combing it), on to rinse, and done. Sometimes it was because I didn't want to waste water, and sometimes because there wasn't much hot, and have you ever tried getting conditioner out with cold water??

So I live in a state with a serious problem, exacerbated by the fact that other states also need water and are demanding more. No one wants to conserve, and they wait until the absolute last moment to institute watering bans. Two years ago, only a few granola people and me gave a thought to rainwater collection systems for their homes (I still don't have one, dang it, but I want one!!). Now that water is costing them so much, they're thinking about barrels, tubs, all sorts of things. Hmm. Why does it take a blow to the wallet to make people think??

Let me preface this next bit with a statement: I am a nutter. Yes, I am. Nutsy-cuckoo, me!

OK, now that's out of the way (I was trying to save you some time - nothing but thoughtful!), let me get to something I've been thinking about for a few years, now: bottled water.

Imagine a grocery store. Just one store. Now, imagine walking down the aisle where they house bottled water. See all those bottles? Now, the soft drinks. See all the liquids with water for their base? Now expand that mental picture to include the entire store full of bottles, cans, and packages full of liquids - shampoo, tinned tuna, vegetables, cleaning supplies, even the packaged meat has water in it.

Where did all that water come from?

Now, take that grocery store and multiply it. Add in all the Super-Whatever stores, warehouse clubs, gas stations and vending machines. Don't be shy, think globally. Go ahead, I'll wait.

Get it?

You want to know why so many places have shortages?? Hello? The water cannot flow if it's bottled up!! If you think bottling water in New York won't affect Georgia, or California, or Africa, think again. We have a global system. Let's think - does a bleeding finger affect your feet? Eventually, it will. Lose enough from one place, it will start to hurt other places.

I say we start a movement - the "Free the Di-Hydrogen Oxide" brigade!! Anyone with me? Anyone?

Why do I hear crickets?

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