Is Agriculture Sucking Fresh Water Dry?: Science in the News

Agriculture Sucking Fresh Water Dry?

from ScienceNOW Daily News

The average American uses enough water each year to fill an
Olympic-sized swimming pool, and global agriculture consumes a
whopping 92% of all fresh water used annually.

Those are the conclusions of the most comprehensive analysis to date
of global water use, which also finds that one-fifth of humankind’s
water consumption flows across international borders as “virtual
water”—the water needed to produce a commodity, such as meat or
electronics, if the ultimate consumers were to make it themselves
rather than outsource its growth or manufacture.

The new study “is the most comprehensive and finest-resolution
analysis to date,” says Sandra Postel, director of the Global Water
Policy Project, which is based in Los Lunas, New Mexico.


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