Water Resources Management Essay In 500 Words With Diagram

Water resource management is the activity of planning, developing, distributing and managing the optimum use of water resources. It is a sub-set of water cycle management. Ideally, water resource management planning has regard to all the competing demands for water and seeks to allocate water on an equitable basis to satisfy all uses and demands. As with other resource management, this is rarely possible in practice.

Overview[edit]

Water is an essential resource for all life on the planet. Of the water resources on Earth only three percent of it is fresh and two-thirds of the freshwater is locked up in ice caps and glaciers. Of the remaining one percent, a fifth is in remote, inaccessible areas and much seasonal rainfall in monsoonal deluges and floods cannot easily be used. As time advances, water is becoming scarcer and having access to clean, safe, drinking water is limited among countries. At present only about 0.08 percent of all the world’s fresh water[2] is exploited by mankind in ever increasing demand for sanitation, drinking, manufacturing, leisure and agriculture. Due to the small percentage of water remaining, optimizing the fresh water we have left from natural resources has been a continuous difficulty in several locations worldwide.

Much effort in water resource management is directed at optimizing the use of water and in minimizing the environmental impact of water use on the natural environment. The observation of water as an integral part of the ecosystem is based on integrated water resource management, where the quantity and quality of the ecosystem help to determine the nature of the natural resources.

As a limited resource, water supply sometimes supposes a challenge. This fact is assumed by the project DESAFIO (the acronym for Democratisation of Water and Sanitation Governance by Means of Socio-Technical Innovations), which has been developed along 30 months and funded by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration. This project faced a difficult task for developing areas: eliminating structural social inequity in the access to indispensable water and public health services. The DESAFIO engineers worked on a water treatment system run with solar power and filters which provides safe water to a very poor community in the state of Minas Gerais.[3]

Successful management of any resources requires accurate knowledge of the resource available, the uses to which it may be put, the competing demands for the resource, measures to and processes to evaluate the significance and worth of competing demands and mechanisms to translate policy decisions into actions on the ground.

For water as a resource, this is particularly difficult since sources of water can cross many national boundaries and the uses of water include many that are difficult to assign financial value to and may also be difficult to manage in conventional terms. Examples include rare species or ecosystems or the very long term value of ancient groundwater reserves.

Agriculture[edit]

Agriculture is the largest user of the world's freshwater resources, consuming 70 percent.[4] As the world population rises it consumes more food (currently exceeding 6%, it is expected to reach 9% by 2050), the industries and urban developments expand, and the emerging biofuel crops trade also demands a share of freshwater resources, water scarcity is becoming an important issue. An assessment of water resource management in agriculture was conducted in 2007 by the International Water Management Institute in Sri Lanka to see if the world had sufficient water to provide food for its growing population or not .[5] It assessed the current availability of water for agriculture on a global scale and mapped out locations suffering from water scarcity. It found that a fifth of the world's people, more than 1.2 billion, live in areas of physical water scarcity, where there is not enough water to meet all their demands. A further 1.6 billion people live in areas experiencing economic water scarcity, where the lack of investment in water or insufficient human capacity make it impossible for authorities to satisfy the demand for water.

The report found that it would be possible to produce the food required in future, but that continuation of today's food production and environmental trends would lead to crises in many parts of the world. Regarding food production, the World Bank targets agricultural food production and water resource management as an increasingly global issue that is fostering an important and growing debate.[6] The authors of the book Out of Water: From abundance to Scarcity and How to Solve the World's Water Problems, which laid down a six-point plan for solving the world's water problems. These are: 1) Improve data related to water; 2) Treasure the environment; 3) Reform water governance; 4) Revitalize agricultural water use; 5) Manage urban and industrial demand; and 6) Empower the poor and women in water resource management. To avoid a global water crisis, farmers will have to strive to increase productivity to meet growing demands for food, while industry and cities find ways to use water more efficiently.[7]

Managing water in urban settings[edit]

As the carrying capacity of the Earth increases greatly due to technological advances, urbanization in modern times occurs because of economic opportunity. This rapid urbanization happens worldwide but mostly in new rising economies and developing countries. Cities in Africa and Asia are growing fastest with 28 out of 39 megacities (a city or urban area with more than 10 million inhabitants) worldwide in these developing nations.[8] The number of megacities will continue to rise reaching approximately 50 in 2025. With developing economieswater scarcity is a very common and very prevalent issue.[9] Global freshwater resources dwindle in the eastern hemisphere either than at the poles, and with the majority of urban development millions live with insufficient fresh water.[10] This is caused by polluted freshwater resources, overexploitedgroundwater resources, insufficient harvesting capacities in the surrounding rural areas, poorly constructed and maintained water supply systems, high amount of informal water use and insufficient technical and water management capacities.[11]

In the areas surrounding urban centres, agriculture must compete with industry and municipal users for safe water supplies, while traditional water sources are becoming polluted with urban runoff. As cities offer the best opportunities for selling produce, farmers often have no alternative to using polluted water to irrigate their crops. Depending on how developed a city’s wastewater treatment is, there can be significant health hazards related to the use of this water. Wastewater from cities can contain a mixture of pollutants. There is usually wastewater from kitchens and toilets along with rainwater runoff. This means that the water usually contains excessive levels of nutrients and salts, as well as a wide range of pathogens. Heavy metals may also be present, along with traces of antibiotics and endocrine disruptors, such as oestrogens.

Developing world countries tend to have the lowest levels of wastewater treatment. Often, the water that farmers use for irrigating crops is contaminated with pathogens from sewage. The pathogens of most concern are bacteria, viruses and parasitic worms, which directly affect farmers’ health and indirectly affect consumers if they eat the contaminated crops. Common illnesses include diarrhoea, which kills 1.1 million people annually and is the second most common cause of infant deaths. Many cholera outbreaks are also related to the reuse of poorly treated wastewater. Actions that reduce or remove contamination, therefore, have the potential to save a large number of lives and improve livelihoods. Scientists have been working to find ways to reduce contamination of food using a method called the 'multiple-barrier approach'.

This involves analysing the food production process from growing crops to selling them in markets and eating them, then considering where it might be possible to create a barrier against contamination. Barriers include: introducing safer irrigation practices; promoting on-farm wastewater treatment; taking actions that cause pathogens to die off; and effectively washing crops after harvest in markets and restaurants.[12]

Urban Decision Support System (UDSS)[edit]

Urban Decision Support System (UDSS) – is a wireless device with a mobile app that uses sensors attached to water appliances in urban residences to collect data about water usage and is an example of data-driven urban water management.[13] The system was developed with a European Commission investment of 2.46 Million Euros[14] to improve the water consumption behaviour of households. Information about every mechanism – dishwashers, showers, washing machines, taps – is wirelessly recorded and sent to the UDSS App on the user’s mobile device. The UDSS is then able to analyse and show homeowners which of their appliances are using the most water, and which behaviour or habits of the households are not encouraged in order to reduce the water usage, rather than simply giving a total usage figure for the whole property, which will allow people to manage their consumption more economically. The UDSS is based on university research in the field of Management Science, at Loughborough University School of Business and Economics, particularly Decision Support System in household water benchmarking, lead by Dr Lili Yang, (Reader)[15]

Future of water resources[edit]

One of the biggest concerns for our water-based resources in the future is the sustainability of the current and even future water resource allocation.[16] As water becomes more scarce, the importance of how it is managed grows vastly. Finding a balance between what is needed by humans and what is needed in the environment is an important step in the sustainability of water resources. Attempts to create sustainable freshwater systems have been seen on a national level in countries such as Australia, and such commitment to the environment could set a model for the rest of the world.

The field of water resources management will have to continue to adapt to the current and future issues facing the allocation of water. With the growing uncertainties of global climate change and the long term impacts of management actions,the decision-making will be even more difficult. It is likely that ongoing climate change will lead to situations that have not been encountered. As a result, alternative management strategies are sought for in order to avoid setbacks in the allocation of water resources.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^USGS - Earth's water distribution
  2. ^Fry, Carolyn The Impact of Climate Change: The World's Greatest Challenge in the Twenty-first Century 2008, New Holland Publishers Ltd
  3. ^"Extend access to water with the help of technology. [Social Impact]. DESAFIO. Democratization of Water and Sanitation Governance by Means of Socio-Technical Innovation (2013-2015). Framework Programme 7 (FP7)". SIOR, Social Impact Open Repository. 
  4. ^Grafton, Q. R., & Hussey, K. (2011). Water Resources . New York: Cambridge University Press.
  5. ^Molden, D. (Ed). Water for food, Water for life is A Comprehensive Assessment of Water Management in Agriculture. Earthscan/IWMI, 2007.
  6. ^The World Bank, 2006 "Reengaging in Agricultural Water Management: Challenges and Options". pp. 4–5. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  7. ^Chartres, C. and Varma, S. Out of water. From Abundance to Scarcity and How to Solve the World’s Water Problems FT Press (USA), 2010
  8. ^"GES knowledgebase". Global Economic Symposium. Retrieved 2016-02-16. 
  9. ^Escolero, O., Kralisch, S., Martínez, S.E., Perevochtchikova, M., (2016). "Diagnóstico y análisis de los factores que influyen en la vulnerabilidad de las fuentes de abastecimiento de agua potable a la Ciudad de México, México"(PDF). Boletín de la Sociedad Geológica Mexicana (in Spanish). 68 (3): 409–427. doi:10.18268/bsgm2016v68n3a3. 
  10. ^Howard, K.W.F (2003). Intensive Use of Groundwater:: Challenges and Opportunities. A.A. Balkema Publishers. 
  11. ^Mund, Jan-Peter. "Capacities for Megacities coping with water scarcity"(PDF). UN-Water Decade Programme on Capacity Development. Retrieved 2014-02-17. 
  12. ^Ilic, S., Drechsel, P., Amoah, P. and LeJeune, J. Chapter 12, Applying the Multiple-Barrier Approach for Microbial Risk Reduction in the Post-Harvest Sector of Wastewater-Irrigated Vegetables
  13. ^Eggimann, Sven; Mutzner, Lena; Wani, Omar; Mariane Yvonne, Schneider; Spuhler, Dorothee; Beutler, Philipp; Maurer, Max (2017). "The potential of knowing more – a review of data-driven urban water management". Environmental Science & Technology. 51 (5): 2538–2553. doi:10.1021/acs.est.6b04267. 
  14. ^"Integrated Support System for Efficient Water Usage and Resources Management". issewatus.eu. Retrieved 2017-01-10. 
  15. ^Chen, Xiaomin; Yang, Shuang-Hua; Yang, Lili; Chen, Xi (2015-01-01). "A Benchmarking Model for Household Water Consumption Based on Adaptive Logic Networks". Procedia Engineering. Computing and Control for the Water Industry (CCWI2015) Sharing the best practice in water management. 119: 1391–1398. doi:10.1016/j.proeng.2015.08.998. 
  16. ^Walmsly, N., & Pearce, G. (2010). Towards Sustainable Water Resources Management: Bringing the Strategic Approach up-to-date. Irrigation & Drainage Systems, 24(3/4), 191-203.

External links[edit]

Visualisation of the distribution (by volume) of water on Earth. Each tiny cube (such as the one representing biological water) corresponds to approximately 1,000 cubic kilometres (240 cu mi) of water, with a mass of approximately 1 trillion tonnes (2000 times that of the Great Pyramid of Giza or 5 times that of Lake Kariba, arguably the heaviest man-made object). The entire block comprises 1 million tiny cubes.[1]

UMC Water Management Policy and Commitment

Recent climate changes have led to severe fluctuations in precipitation with more frequent floods and droughts. External stakeholders are also increasingly concerned about issues related to water resources. To respond to complex water resource issues on a timely basis and effectively integrate prevention, consumption reduction, contingency response, and other management concepts, UMC has successfully completed water risk factor identification and response measures. The UMC Water Resource Management Policy and Commitment was announced in 2015 to serve as our highest guiding principles for water resource management.

UMC Water Management Policy and Commitment

♦ Policy:
Maximize water efficiency, increase ability of valuable downstream chains to withstand water risk, and promote the importance of water resources and conservation.

♦ Commitment:

1

Introduce water risk management system

2

Develop and utilize diverse water sources

3

Use active management indicators to promote water conservation

4

Cooperate with supply chains to reduce water footprint

5

Provide open and transparent water information

6

Widely promote water education

 

Water Risk Management

Given extreme climates, water risks have become key issues facing businesses, and for the semiconductor industry, water resource risk management has become an urgent issue.

Regulations

 

Regulations and control for waste water quality / water discharge quantity

• Participate in government, unions and association seminars to share practical experience and advice
• Implement wastewater source diversion to enhance quality of wastewater
• Continue to assess new wastewater treatment technology
• upgrade production efficiency to reduce water consumption and improve water recovery

Water charges

Disaster

 

Heavy rainfall and flooding

• Improve flood potential and risk assessments
• Improve AIG Insurance audit
• Promote Business Continuity Management System (was awarded ISO22301 certification)
• Globalize factories and supply chain

Global shortage of water resources

• Reduce pressure of water demand by increasing water recovery and reuse
• Use limited water resources efficiently
• Evaluate and introduce new water sources
• R&D of water resource warning devices

Others

 

Consumers, customers, investors and other stakeholders demand green products from businesses, and due to expanding influence to suppliers, water consuming commodities are indirectly eliminated.

• Promote analysis and certification of life cycle of product environmental impact, and implement source reduction (UMC has been awarded water footprint certification, and continues to promote water conservation programs)

Shortage of raw materials due to disrupted supply caused by floods.

• Assess suppliers' water risk

Change of water source resulted in the change of water quality.

• Water quality risk assessment was conducted.


Water Conservation During Manufacturing

UMC’s first principle of water consumption is designing a water conserving process, followed by recovering water for reuse and highly efficient water management. To effectively reduce water resource consumption, all three principles must be integrated. In addition to conserving water, the company also actively participates in the Science Park Administration’s water management indicator formulation and annual manufacturer water conservation counseling and technology exchanges. To ensure a secure water supply, the company also participates in the Water Resources Agency’s water shortage contingency measures for water source stabilization and eutrophication. Impacted by global climate change, UMC strives to promote energy conservation and carbon reduction activities, and include them in its management policy. Hence water conservation and improvement activities are ongoing to provide further opportunities for company growth.

UMC Eight Water Conservation Measures Approach

1. Develop policy and implement effective water conservation.
2. Recover resource, and curb and reduce resource use.
3. Continue to improve and integrate with environmental protection.
4. Through daily management approaches, achieve management outcome.
5. Divert wastewater, implement multiple re-use and optimize water efficiency.
6. Establish water resources management system, compare with water consumption balance diagram and use water rationally.
7. Integration and sharing of technological resources by the Fab Technical Committee.
8. Directly incorporate water conservation measures into regulations for newly constructed fabs.

Percentage and Total Water Recycle and Reuse

Due to its past promotion of water conservation, reduction and recycling measures, and its high recovery rate in the manufacturing process, UMC's current water recovery has exceeded the newly increased total water intake. Total water recovery and reuse could reach more than 190% of water intake.

Figure: Percentage of water recovery and reuse to total water intake.

Note: Total water intake includes tap water + rain water + condensate.

Industrial Exchange and Counseling

In addition to actively promoting water conservation within the company, UMC began participating in yearly water conservation counseling organized by science parks in 2002, and as of 2016, the company has handled 171 cases and counseled a total of more than 80 manufacturers. The company shares its valuable water conservation experience with like industries to help reduce water demand, and using 2016 as an example, potential water conservation following counseling was 1,380,000 tons / year.



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