Water is a precious resource that is essential for life. We use water for drinking, bathing, cooking, cleaning, and other activities. But how much water do we use?
According to the United Nations, the world uses about 4 trillion cubic meters of freshwater annually. This is equivalent to about 10 billion tons of water. Of this, about 70% is used for agriculture, 20% for industry, 10% for domestic purposes, and 5% for energy production.
The pie chart below shows the percentage of water use by different human activities.
Agriculture is the largest water user in the world, accounting for about 70% of all freshwater withdrawals. This is because water is needed to irrigate crops, water livestock, and process agricultural products.
The industry is the second largest water user, accounting for about 20% of all freshwater withdrawals. Water is used in various industrial processes, including manufacturing, mining, and energy production.
Domestic use accounts for about 10% of all freshwater withdrawals. This includes water used for drinking, bathing, cooking, and cleaning.
Energy production is a relatively small water user, accounting for about 5% of all freshwater withdrawals. However, water is used in various ways to generate electricity, including cooling power plants and processing nuclear fuel.
Other water uses, such as recreation and landscaping, account for the remaining 5% of freshwater withdrawals.
It is important to note that these percentages vary from country to country. For example, agriculture accounts for a much larger share of water use in some countries than in others. It is also important to note that the amount of water each activity uses can vary depending on the specific circumstances. For example, the amount of water used for agriculture will depend on the type of crops being grown and the climate.
The way we use water has a significant impact on the environment. Using water inefficiently can contribute to water pollution, scarcity, and climate change. We can do several things to reduce our water footprint, such as fixing leaks, taking shorter showers, and watering our lawns less often. By making small changes in our daily habits, we can help to conserve water and protect the environment.