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Describe and evaluate water management strategies (excluding those directed at flood control).

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Introduction

Describe and evaluate water management strategies (excluding those directed at flood control). Over the past 60 years agriculture, industry and domestic use caused an increase of water use from 1000 cubic kilometers to 5000 cubic kilometers per annum. If current trends continue to increase, water shortage will affect 3.5 billion people, 48% of the world?s estimated population, by 2025. In order to prevent water stress to such great extend, measurements and strategies of irrigation and agriculture, freshwater wetland, groundwater and damns and reservoirs were established. Dams and reservoirs certainly are one of the most important water management strategies. The barrier placed across the river Nile and the artificial store that lies right behind the dam together make the Aswan Dam, lying south of the city Aswan in Egypt. Hydroelectric power generation is water being stored behind the dam that drives the turbines and accounts for 45% of Egypt?s energy needed. Moreover, the dam provides water to crops during dry seasons, in times of drought or water scarcity and has irrigated an estimated of 3.4 million hectares of land, which lead to an increasing profit of Egypt?s economy. ...read more.

Middle

can only be used as long as they are given enough time to recharge from a well after it has been exploited or if it is recharged artificially by pumping rainwater, for example, into it. However, groundwater pollution and depletion have immense consequences as agriculture poisons groundwater with the use of fertilizers and pesticides, industry with chemicals and metals, domestic households with products like shampoo. In addition, recharging basins artificially with saltwater, make them useless for human consumption. Over-exploiting groundwater basins when there is drought leads to no more groundwater to rely on and there is a higher risk of crop failure. Also, if too much groundwater is removed, the ground might sink down, like it happened in Mexico City. Even though, groundwater is very usable for human use, a balance between exploitation and recharging has to be found without polluting and destroying the groundwater reservoirs. Apart from dams and groundwater reservoirs, freshwater wetlands have to be managed well as they have fundamental ecological functions. Wetlands are areas of land, which are full of moisture mostly or always throughout the year. The Kissimmee River located in central Florida, USA was a river with a length of 200 kilometers. ...read more.

Conclusion

Moreover, irrigation often leads to an increase of salinization as the Aral Sea, on the border of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, started to irrigate the desert surrounding it in 1960 and by 2007 the salinity changed from 10 grams/L at the start to 100 grams/L, whereas normal seawater has a salinity of 35 grams/L. The problem of the rapidly increasing salinity destroyed the sea?s ecosystem and crops being planted nearby as storms would take the masses of salt left in the ?Aral Sea? and carry them on. Although irrigation systems have negative sides, it is a very good strategy if they are managed well. To conclude, these four strategies established to manage water better, all connect to each other and can only work if all other strategies are being thought of when one is being used, as wetlands, for example, mustn?t be destroyed as they are very helpful in recharging groundwater. Most often, the case of over-exploitation and inconsideration of consequences lead to destructions of ecosystems, as water is the main part of them. These strategies will have to balance themselves and humanity will have to look at the rate of water extraction and the actual consumption, in order to make a difference. ...read more.

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