If you want to talk about human rights, let's start with pure, safe drinking water for all humans.
In 1995 Ismail Serageldin, vice president of the World Bank (an agency in itself problematic in my opinion), wrote "If the wars of this century were fought over oil, the wars of the next century will be fought over water unless we change our approach to managing this precious and vital resource".
Fourteen years later this couldn't be more true. Between 1 and 2 billion people living in the developing world lack access to clean water and that number is expected to rise to 2.5 billion in 2010 with increased pollution and privatization of this natural resource. Not only is it a problem in the developing world, but a major problem we face right here in the USA & globally.
The public drinking water in the USA is loaded with a mix of toxic chemicals including sodium flouride (a by product of nuclear waste & the aluminum industry, the main ingredient in rat poison), chlorine, chloramine (chlorine with ammonia), alumuinium chlorohydrate, along with an array of pharmacueticals recently detected in major city water supplies which are not filtered out. Over 20 prescription drugs were found in NYC drinking water last year after testing and this rang true in other communities as well. I recommend no one drink the water from the tap unless you have a water purification system to take out what our gov't has put in the water claiming to make it safer.
Equally as disturbing is that water has now become a commodity, this would have been unthinkable just 20 years ago. Then, bottled water was certainly not an accepted part of everyday life. It is now normal to spend a few dollars a day on bottled water. Municipalities now charge for your water as well, something that was once free. Big corporations now promote their water as better and safer which is not always true. Huge profits are being made on something that for sure should be FREE & SAFE TO EVERY HUMAN ON THE PLANET! Talk about a human right, how about water to start with? Will water be the next oil? Let's hope not but we must speak out loudly now. Earlier this year to illustrate this point I was paying more for a gallon of water than for a gallon of gas in the country.
Maude Barlow (pictured left), chairperson of the Council of Canadians (Canada's largest advocacy organization), said to Mother Jones in 2005 "People don't understand how fast the world is becoming a desert." She stated "We need to declare water a public trust. Water belongs to the Earth and all species. It belongs to future generations. We need to challenge the world bank and trade agreements. We have to take back the power to this thing that is essential to life".
Carbon emmisions from homes, cars & power plants are changing the chemical composition of the oceans by increasing the water acidity, which leads to a breakdown in the ocean's food chain. Riverkeeper found that 10 out of 13 leading species in the Hudson River have been on the decline since the 1980's. This is another serious issue that must be addressed concerning water.
We must not only demand that our water supply be cleaned and toxic cocktails of chemicals be removed from our municipal drinking water supplies, but we must also conserve water and stop wasting it.
Here are a few easy tips on water conservation and less carbon emmisions:
Decrease your shower time by two minutes and you can save approximately 250 gallons of water a month.
Upgrade your shower head to a slow-flow, water-efficient model and save up to 17,000 gallons a year. Several on the market can save up to 40% of water used by older shower heads.
Every home that turns the thermostat down by 2 degrees in the winter & up 4 degrees in the summer can cut 2,000 lbs of carbon emmision a year.
A gallon of gas produces 25 lbs of carbon so walking, bicycling, carpooling or public transportation can make a difference.
Collect rainwater & use it to water plants & vegetables. This practice is actually outlawed in a few parts of the country. I guess the corporate-controlled gov't wants to own rain now, very scary. Imagine, it is illegal to collect rainwater on your own property.
Don't leave water running the entire time when washing & rinsing dishes.
Run your washing machine only when full.You can save up to 100 gallons a month.
Spread a layer of organic mulch around plants and gardens to help retain moisture.
Check your faucets, toilet and outdoor hose for leaks.
Turn off the water while brushing your teeth or while shaving. This can save 25-50 gallons a month.
Get rid of your garbage disposal and start a compost instead. Saves up to 150 gallons a month.
Adjust your lawn mower to a higher setting. Taller lawns shade roots and holds moisture better.
JUST A 10% REDUCTION IN OUR WATER USAGE WOULD MAKE A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON IMPROVING THE BLEAK OUTLOOK POTENTIALLY FACING US.