The world is facing water shortages in some areas and water scarcity in others, and it is only going to get worse as time goes by. There are however several methods of addressing the problem of water shortages and water scarcity:
Countries such as Australia and Israel and others have already done quite a bit to solve water scarcity problems in their area of the globe by constructing desalination plants to filter sea water by removing the salt to produce fresh drinking water. Desalination technology remains rather controversial though; Israel weathered the worst drought since 1945 without any problems with water shortages recently.
Due to the fact that fresh water is not evenly distributed, even in generally water-rich nations, there may be pockets of water scarcity in close proximity to regions with lush vegetation due to cities springing up in places where the available water supply cannot sustain the increased population.
The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) says that approximately 60% of European cities rely on groundwater, dams and aqueducts for their drinking water. Unfortunately, larger cities are using this water faster than it can be replenished.
In other regions, the diversion and damming of rivers are used as a means of supplying both drinking water and agricultural water to the nearby areas, but this is a very controversial method, as it can be very damaging to the local ecosystems.
Diversion is very expensive though, and has been likened to ‘robbing Peter to pay Paul’ as it is predicted that it could eventually destroy natural freshwater ecosystems, killing off the fish and other living creatures, including plant life in the rivers as they dry up. This would decimate local fishing industries, creating economic problems for the local population, especially those who fish or work in the fishing industry, as it would cause loss of a main food source and income.