Did you know that the average American uses two thousand gallons of water a day? The U.S. water footprint is two-times the global average. Water is finite but our demands are not. Everything we eat, wear and buy takes water – sometimes a surprising amount! By better understanding how much water it takes to keep our lifestyles afloat, we can make some easy and wise choices to conserve – and help replenish our groundwater resources.
As community members you are cordially invited to attend the 15th Annual Palouse Basin Water Summit – Change the Course, scheduled for October 18th from 4:30 – 8:00 p.m. at the SEL Event Center.
The Summit features Sandra Postel, author of “Replenish – The Virtuous Cycle of Water and Prosperity,” and director of the Global Water Policy Project and co-creator of Change the Course, the national water stewardship initiative awarded the 2017 US Water Prize for restoring billions of gallons of water to depleted rivers and wetlands. From 2009-2015, Postel served as Freshwater Fellow of the National Geographic Society.
In her book Postel writes, “We have disrupted the natural water cycle for centuries in an effort to control water for our own prosperity. Yet every year, recovery from droughts and floods costs billions of dollars, and we spend billions more on dams, diversions, levees, and other feats of engineering. These massive projects are not only risky financially and environmentally, they often threaten social and political stability. What if the answer was not further control of the water cycle, but repair and replenishment?” Postel takes readers around the world to explore water projects that work with, rather than against, nature’s rhythms. In New Mexico, forest rehabilitation is safeguarding drinking water; along the Mississippi River, farmers are planting cover crops to reduce polluted runoff; and in China, “sponge cities” are capturing rainwater to curb urban flooding.
Postel stresses that efforts like these will be essential as climate change disrupts both weather patterns and the models on which we base our infrastructure. We will be forced to adapt. The question is whether we will continue to fight the water cycle or recognize our place in it and take advantage of the inherent services nature offers. Water, Postel writes, is a gift, the source of life itself. How will we use this greatest of gifts?
At this year’s Summit, we’ll also discuss the current state of the Palouse Basin and the latest research on increasing our water supplies for our homes, businesses, universities and the next generation. We’ll also hear from local water conservation managers about some exciting new ways to conserve water through wisescape landscaping.
Be a part of changing the course of water use here on the Palouse by joing us at this free community event.