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ITT's Place in the Cycle of Water - Water Solutions

ITT's Place in the Cycle of Water - Water Solutions

Water

Water WorriesWater Demand: The Long-Term TrendThe chart below illustrates that, at a global level, thereare three main uses of water resources (although,sector demand differs by region):• Agricultural — water is used primarily forirrigation.• Municipal — water use is directly related towithdrawal by the populations of cities andtowns. While the absolute amount of waterdirectly consumed per capita might not change,water withdrawal increases with urbanization,and the construction of offices, schools,shopping malls, etc.• Industrial — water is used for a number ofpurposes in industry, including cooling. Theelectricity generation sector is a particularlylarge consumer. In addition, note that a notinsignificant amount of water has typically beenlost to evaporation during reservoir construction.Total global water withdrawal in 2010 is estimated atabout 4,430 cubic km. So, it would seem that waterwithdrawal is not that great, amounting to about 10%of renewable global water resources.Importantly, however, water resources are distributedvery unevenly. As the figure on the next pageillustrates, unpopulated areas of the earth — includingSiberia and the northern part of the Americancontinent — have large water resources, but littlewater withdrawal. By contrast, densely populated areas— including large parts of Asia, as well as SouthernEurope — have high levels of water withdrawal relativeto the available resources.ITT’s Place In The Cycle of Water: Everything But The Pipes

Water WorriesThis issue of uneven water distribution is also truewithin specific countries:• The bulk of the Australian population isconcentrated on the eastern side of the continent,which has become progressively drier becauseof climate-driven precipitation change that isdelivering more rain to the sparsely-populatedwestern side.• The two fastest-growing states (in terms ofpopulation growth) in the U.S. — Arizona andNevada — also rank as the driest in terms ofannual precipitation.• China, which has roughly 20% of the world’spopulation, has only about 7% of the world’swater resources, with about four-fifths of thatwater supply concentrated in the south of the vastcountry.55

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