Tag: sea level

Water this summer — too much or too little?


Just a couple of weeks ago I wrote an article about the importance of water this summer for keeping cool – particularly when you have no air conditioning. Then just last Saturday I was on the phone with my son in Germany, talking about keeping his young family safe during the heat wave that was going on in Europe!

At the same time my LinkedIn feed is full of pictures of flooding in the Midwest – often with the caption “No end in sight!”

What do you expect this summer? Too much or too little water? And does it really make a difference?

I think it does. According to the United Nations, “about 90% of all natural disasters are water-related!”

90%? Just think about it. Here are 5 miscellaneous facts that give us an idea of the role water is playing right here, right now in the U.S. I think we should all be familiar with details like these:

  • This year’s floods in Iowa are so bad that Governor Reynolds didn’t even have to do a damage assessment in order to apply for disaster relief.
  • The 2018 wildfires in California (“worst in history) were intensified by nearly 8 years of drought. This summer, utility company PG&E has already begun “Public Safety Power Shutoff’s (PSPS)” to protect from more electrical fires.
  • When Hurricane Florence hit North Carolina in last September, dozens of “hog lagoons” overflowed or were damaged – leaking pig poop onto surrounding acreage and into the groundwater. (Did you realize that over 40% of Americans rely on groundwater for drinking water?)
  • Florida has been in the news lately, not just because of political activity. Turns out that the sea level there is rising by 1 inch every 3 years. Water comes right up through the ground in coastal cities! And saltwater in getting into drinking water and compromising sewage plants.
  • Remember Hurricane Harvey, in Houston? So do the residents there! A study of over 13,000 people shows that mental health damage has had a bigger impact than physical damage. . . both for people whose homes were flooded and those whose homes were spared.

So what can we do about water this summer?

We can’t change the weather. But we can certainly be more aware of how precious clean water really is. We can do our best not to waste or pollute, and we can encourage those around us to do the same.

Your Emergency Plan Guide team

P.S. Here in California that drought had an impact on more than the forests. All sorts of restrictions were placed on washing cars, watering lawns, etc. Even today, waiters bring out silverware and menus but not necessarily water. You have to ask for it!

What’s going on in your neighborhood to save water?

Day 5 of Summer Vacation: A time for some shorter and lighter Advisories as a welcome change-of-pace!