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Water, water everywhere, nor any drop to drink: managing the world’s most precious commodity

We all need water to live, but it might not be so easy to get in the future
We all need water to live, but it might not be so easy to get in the future
David McNew/Getty Images

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Wars have been fought over oil, precious gems and even salt—but up until now, modern global civilization has been relatively lucky in its access to and supply of potable water. That time might be coming to an end, as the pressures of population growth, environmental degradation and the ravages of global warming have conspired to make fresh water an increasingly rare commodity in parts of the Earth. According to the World Health Organization, water scarcity affects one in three people on every continent. Lack of fresh water sources is a growing human tragedy but also is bad business, as economic growth without fresh water is impossible. How can world leaders work together to sustain global water supplies without killing each other in the process?


Stella Thomas, Founder and President of the Global Water Fund, an international organization committed to providing clean water to all people of the world