Sunday, June 24, 2007

water.

I’ve been thinking about water again. I mean, while it did rain, some,(2/10ths of an inch) we are back out there watering, constantly.

Sprinklers going round and round, drip tapes dripping. We’re putting a thousand gallons an hour out on the fields

Every hour.

Or almost every hour (actually, right now, about 15,000 gallons a day, give us some time to move the sprinklers around and maybe, sometimes, get a little sleep at night).

And while we are, as fast as we can, spreading water on our fields, I was worrying that, you know, this is on the verge of not being enough.

I mean, what if suddenly the amount of water coming out of the ground were to slow down?

Where would we be then?

The creek that goes through the bottom of our land has virtually stopped flowing.

There’s only a trickle going through the pipe where it crosses the drive.

And the weather says there’s no sign of measurable rain in the foreseeable future.

This morning I read an article about Australia’s recent drought. (Wenonah says its not recent, ‘its on going’). A drought that’s setting something like a thousand year drought record.

Wow. That’s something to give you pause. It hasn’t been this dry down there in a thousand years.

Meaning, it’s really, really dry.

In the best of times most of Australia except for those little specks of land where the majority of the population lives, is near desert.

Sand, wind and flies.

Imagine what its like with the worst drought in a millennium?).

Anyway, back to North America and water.

Wenonah is always saying that exporting food is really exporting water by another name. That when we get our winter vegetables from South America what we are really doing is getting South America’s water with a little bit of value added.

And this goes for Europe too. When the Europeans get their vegetables from Africa they are getting African water.

And when Bush and all of those congressmen line up to sign legislation designed to create liquid fuel out of corn and whatever other vegetable crop they imagine turning into something to burn what they are really doing is converting our natural water supply into something else.

I’ve heard that for Bush’s dream of vegetable based fuel we will need to put additional farmland the equivalent of most of Iowa and Nebraska into production.

Only, we don’t have that much additional farmland.

And we especially don’t have that much farmland with irrigation water.

In fact, right now, we are pumping more water out of the ground than is being replaced.

And as we move into a world of less water, I mean a world of constant water shortage, this is something we should be seriously considering as we make our energy and food choices.

Leigh Hauter

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