Growing up, you may have learned in health class, or maybe a Boy or Girl Scouts trip, that you can survive much longer without food than without water. There’s a reason for that. There’s a reason why simple tips on improving your health usually include drinking more water. There is a reason why scientists get so darn excited when we find water, or evidence of past water, on other planets: it’s because nothing we know of can survive without it. Water is life.
Each cell in your body contains water. About Sixty percent of your total body weight is water. Perhaps that’s why this past summer, the United Nations General Assembly declared that water is a basic human right. They estimate that 884 million people in the world, mostly in developing nations, don’t have access to clean drinking water. 1.5 million children under the age of five die each year due to water and sanitation issues.
Living in the US, or other developed nations, it’s difficult to imagine lacking access to clean water. We can buy bottles of purified water just about everywhere. Our faucets not only provide clean water, but at the exact temperature we want or need. So, we take it for granted. We let our fresh rainwater drain right into the sewer. We spray it on our lawns and decorative plants. We bathe in drinkable water, just letting it run over our bodies for 15 minutes a day, every day.
Just think about how it felt the last time you were dehydrated, maybe from exercise or heat or a long flight. Even in its early stages dehydration doesn’t feel good. You feel dizzy, your mouth is dry, you can’t concentrate. What do you think it would feel like to always be dehydrated? For every one of your cells to be craving more water? You’d drink whatever water was available, even if it would end up making you sick and even more dehydrated, because water is at the very top of the list of things we need to survive.
That’s why access to clean water is so important. That’s why it is not a luxury, but a basic human right. One that is currently denied to over 800 million people. Today. We are Persephone are happy to be taking part in Blog Action Day 2010, and we hope that you’ll do your part as well.
One reply on “Water is Life”
I am experiencing this to a certain degree.
I live in Christchurch, New Zealand and because of the recent earthquake our drinking water was contaminated with sewage water. We can, of course, go to the store and buy drinking water and we still have running water for showers but it makes you realise how hard it must be to have no drinking water readily avaliable.