Ensia is a magazine showcasing environmental solutions in action. Powered by the Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota, they connect people with ideas, information and inspiration they can use to change the world. They also create some fascinating infographics that challenge those that are cynical with regard to the global environmental issues we must join together to deal with.
There has been much discussion, debate, and demagoguery around the notion of “peak oil” over the past several decades. As the infographic below illustrates, we have another “peak” that is coming fast at us that would have far more serious ramifications were it to become manifest.
The overwhelming majority of global fresh water is locked up as ice or permanent snow cover, making it inaccessible and severely limiting our readily available supply. The average American uses 65 to 78 gallons of water per day, while the average person in the Republic of Gambia, Africa, uses just 1.17 gallons, barely above the minimum amount needed to survive.
Not only do we consume a lot of water per day, we also use huge amounts of “virtual water.” Virtual water is defined as water we consume indirectly from goods we use, food we eat, etc.