The Setup by Lara Miller, Natural Resource Agent, Pinellas County Extension
In her blog, Lara Miller states “To make a long and complex story simple, of all the water on the Earth, only 1% is usable by humans… If we use the water faster than it can be recharged by rainfall, our water resources become depleted.” She also referred to the “1% usable by humans” as a “tiny fraction of remaining fresh water” (read her blog post here: Water, Water, Everywhere...)
That is Scary – Or is It?
I was curious. I had seen this type of environmental activism to restrict irrigation and ban fertilizers. So, I did some research to discover exactly how quickly our water resources will be depleted and just how “tiny” is 1% of the useable water.
There is 326 million trillion gallons of water on the earth – that would be 326,000,000,000,000,000,000 gallons. One percent (1% - the tiny fraction) of all the water on the earth is 3.26 million trillion gallons of usable water. Therefore, today – right now - there is about 450 million gallons of usable water per man, woman and child (7 billion people). That may be a tiny fraction of the total water on the Earth but if the rain stopped falling today; we have enough water to last 27,000 years!
Using the Cooperative Extension Service for Environmental Activism
In the famous words of Maxwell Smart “Missed it by that much!” I’m not convinced our water resources will be depleted nor is “tiny fraction” a good descriptor of usable water on the planet. But for Lara Miller, Natural Resource Agent, I think she is convinced. She has made it her job to convince you and me to use less water. And she Is willing to do so by any means including half-truths and misleading facts – the hallmarks of environmental activism. That’s not good!