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How does water support life on Earth?

Planet Green

life-on-EarthThe planet’s oceans, rivers, lakes and other bodies of water provide homes to countless species of plants and animals, but water supports life in many other ways as well. We use water every day in farming and agriculture, manufacturing and transportation, and power generation, too. In addition, water plays an important role in regulating the temperature of the Earth.

All is not well with this life-giving liquid, however. Supply and demand create thorny issues the world over. According to the United Nations, the planet Earth is facing a “water crisis.” While there is no shortage of water on the planet Earth itself, the major issues are sanitation and access: People who need fresh water often can’t get to it (or it can’t get to them), and sometimes the water that people are able to acquire is dirty and untreated, meaning it can contain disease-causing microorganisms and other contaminants. Далее

52% of Earth’s 9.7 billion people will live in water-stressed areas in 2050, MIT study shows

Earth’s not running out of water any time soon. If you don’t believe me, look at any map that shows the southern hemisphere centered on the south pole…

cat-water-tongue-drinkingBut having access to enough fresh water where it is needed to support ecosystems, grow crops, etc, that’s another story. MIT researchers have used a new modeling software to calculate the ability of global water resources to meet water needs through 2050, and things don’t look too great for over half of what is expected to be world population at that point:

The researchers expect 5 billion (52 percent) of the world’s projected 9.7 billion people to live in water-stressed areas by 2050. They also expect about 1 billion more people to be living in areas where water demand exceeds surface-water supply. A large portion of these regions already face water stress — most notably India, Northern Africa and the Middle East. Далее

The Festina Lente Bridge

Lente-Bridge1Festina lente (Latin for “make haste slowly”) is a pedestrian bridge over the Miljacka River in Sarajevo. The bridge is 38 meters long and features an unusual looping in the middle, suggesting slowing down and enjoying the view. Далее

The Sea Otter

The-Sea-Otter1The sea otter (Enhydra lutris) is a marine mammal native to the coasts of the northern and eastern North Pacific Ocean. Adult sea otters typically weigh between 14 and 45 kg (31 and 99 lb), making them the heaviest members of the weasel family, but among the smallest marine mammals. Далее

Lost City Shicheng found Underwater in China

Qiandao Lake, a man-made lake located in Chun’an County, Zhejiang, China, formed after the completion of the Xin’an River hydroelectric station in 1959. 1,078 large islands dot the lake and a few thousand smaller ones are scattered across it. The lake covers an area of 573 km² and has a storage capacity of 17.8 km³. The islands in the lake cover about 86 km² Qiandao-Lake1The first underwater exploration attempt of the drowned city was in 2001 when it was discovered there were 265 arches in the preserved ruins. Lion City is about the size of 62 football fields. Далее