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World Water Crisis: >1 out of 6 people lack safe drinking water, 2/3 of world population to suffer fr water shortages by 2025

lack of clean water access around the world
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According to the UN, unsanitary water kills more people worldwide than war. As the precious water supply dwindles, it may prove to be more than just a crisis for developing countries.

Did the US hit peak water in 1970?
Everyone is aware of the dangers of peak oil, but peak water is just as, if not more, devastating. The planet's fresh water supply is a precious resource and the rate at which the industrialised world consumes it is always increasing. As such, there is a fear, as with oil, that eventually extraction rates hit a peak and it's only downhill from thereon-in. Staff at the Pacific Institute however have made a disturbing discovery - that the US hit 'peak water' in 1970... and nobody noticed.

The Facts About The Global Drinking Water Crisis

• 1.1 billion people in the world do not have access to safe drinking water, roughly one-sixth of the world's population.

Consumption

• The average American uses 100 to 175 gallons of water per day.

• The average African Family uses 5 gallons per day.

• It takes 5 liters of water to make 1 liter of bottled water.

• Almost 70 percent of the available fresh water gets used for irrigation in agriculture.

• More than half of the water used for irrigation leaks, evaporates or runs off.

• It takes 2,900 gallons of water to produce one quarter pound hamburger (just the meat)

Our Planet  read more »

Kids vs. Global Warming. Million Youth "iMatter March" on Mother's Day: "protect Planet for our future and generations to come"

Youth for planet in all 50 states and the District of Columbia are suing the government in order to create an ‘atmospheric trust,’ arguing that public trust law should protect the atmosphere for people and future generations.

Kids vs Global Warming is a non profit organization founded and led by Alec Loorz, who is now 16 years old.

2011 - on Mother’s Day one million youth stand up for their planet for the future generation’s planet

Kids, the climate-crisis-affected generation, refuse to inherit a damaged planet from us, from parent and grandparent generations. They demand the atmosphere protected for their future. They will have iMatter climate march on Mother's Day, May 7-14; they are taking legal action to claim "the atmosphere belongs to us all". Youth to preserve the planet in all 50 states and the District of Columbia announced today that they're suing the government in order to create an "atmospheric trust," arguing that public trust law should protect the atmosphere for future generations. The plaintiffs and petitioners on all the cases are young people. Kids deserve a healthy Earth to live, to survive, to call it home. Shall we, parent / grandparent generations, leave behind at least a reasonably sustainable (if not better) place behind us for our kids, for children’s children? Regardless, now kids are standing up for their future.

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Cop15: "Humanity's Fateful Fight", Al Gore, Lord Stern, church leaders..Photo: homes submerged: Bangladesh, India

Former US vice-president Al Gore delivers a speech in the Bella center, Copenhagen.

How simple the question: do we have Planet B, or Earth C? Can we ask Nature to wait for our negotiation while CO2 are being pumped non-stop into our atmosphere; temperature goes higher, ice cap becomes thinner; sea level is rising and our land is shrinking? Lord Stern described the summit as the "most important gathering since the second world war, given what is at stake". Scientists say, "on climate, lost decade now leads to final chance, 'last' decade." "The decade of the 2000s will end as the warmest ever on global temperature charts. Warmer still lies ahead. Through 10 years of global boom and bust, of breakneck change around the planet, of terrorism, war and division, all people everywhere under that warming sun faced one threat together: the buildup of greenhouse gases, the rise in temperatures, the danger of a shifting climate, of drought, weather extremes and encroaching seas, of untold damage to the world humanity has created for itself over millennia." Al Gore is calling for "Humanity's Fateful Fight", "latest science on melting of Arctic ice cap, evidence "only reckless fools would ignore".

Kurihamari, India: Villagers row a boat carrying relief materials past submerged homes

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"I do not believe we can wait till next November or December."  read more »

Building and painting the Brooklyn Bridge, world's first steel suspension bridge, 5,989 feet long, began in 1869, opened in 1883


Brooklyn Bridge painters at work high above the city on December 3, 1915

Construction began in 1869 and completed fourteen years later in 1883.

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The Brooklyn Bridge - the world's first steel suspension bridge - is a beloved landmark and a cultural icon of NYC. It's been celebrated in art, poetry, song, and on film. The mastermind behind the bridge called it "the greatest engineering work of the age… a great work of art."

Spanning the East River, the Brooklyn Bridge connects Manhattan and Brooklyn. It's 5,989 feet (1.825km) in length and soars 119 feet (36.27m) above the river. Its two granite Gothic towers rise 276.5 feet (84.27m) above the water. The roadway platform is hung on steel suspenders strung from four thick cables, each made of 5,296 galvanized steel wires bound together and anchored on both shorelines.

In 1867, one-third of the workers in Brooklyn (then the nation's fourth-largest city) worked in Manhattan. The only way to reach the island was by boat, and the river sometimes froze solid, stranding commuters and isolating both cities. And so, that year, a plan for a massive bridge was approved. It was designed by John A. Roebling, an engineer who'd made a fortune pioneering the manufacture of wire rope made of a new type of metal: steel.  read more »

8 Nov 1731 Benjamin Franklin opens first US library in Philadelphia

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November 8, 1731 - Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin opens 1st U.S. library

Most Americans in the 1730s had limited access to books. Books, in early America, were rare and expensive. There were no public libraries. Only the very wealthy and the clergy had access to large numbers of books. Even men of moderate means could not readily afford books. Enter Benjamin Franklin.

On July 1, 1731, Franklin and a group of members from the Junto, a philosophical association, drew up "Articles of Agreement" to form a library. The Junto was interested in a wide range of ideas, from economics to solving social woes to politics to science. But they could not turn to books to increase their knowledge or settle disputes, as between them they owned few tomes. But they recognized that via the Junto's combined purchasing power, books could be made available to all members.

So it was that 50 subscribers invested 40 shillings each to start a library. Members also promised to invest 10 shillings more every year to buy additional books and to help maintain the library. They chose as their motto a Latin phrase which roughly translates as "To support the common good is divine." Philip Syng, a silversmith who would one day create the inkstand with which the Declaration and Constitution were signed, designed the Company's seal.  read more »

Merrier and freer on car-free days. "In town without my car!" European Mobility Week in over 2000 cities & towns

European Mobility Week: opportunity for European cities and towns to participate to the most widespread event on sustainable mobility

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After the organization of two successful "In town without my car!" events in the whole of Europe, the year 2002 marked the start of a new initiative, the European Mobility Week! From 16 to 22 September 2009 the European Mobility Week was the opportunity for European cities and towns to participate to the most widespread event on sustainable mobility. A full week of events dedicated to sustainable mobility has been organized in more than 2000 cities and towns.

car-free week, Graz, Austria

European Mobility Week: Vilnius, Lithuania

car-free week, Requena, Spain

European Mobility Week: Budapest, Hungary

Swansea, United Kingdom - European Mobility Week 2009  read more »

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