World Water Day

By Shelby Egan

Have you ever taken the time to think about where your drinking water comes from? March 22, 2013 is the international celebration of World Water Day!  This day, founded by the United Nations, focuses on the importance of freshwater and how to use water resources responsibly.  This year’s theme is water cooperation.  Water cooperation means learning how people from all over the world can learn to share and manage water for things like drinking water, food production, and energy. 

After moving to Chicago seven months ago, I am able to physically see part of the world’s largest freshwater systems: the Great Lakes. Living just blocks from Lake Michigan is not only a beautiful place to take a walk or go for a run, but a daily reminder of where my drinking water and the water used to wash my clothes comes from.  Did you know that less than 1% of the earth’s freshwater coming from lakes, rivers, reservoirs and underground sources is drinkable?  As a student, you may not have the power to be in charge of managing freshwater resources but you do have to power to learn more about World Water Day.  By visiting the United Nation’s World Water Day’s webpage, you can learn more about the importance of freshwater.  The U.S. EPA also has fun and educational resources for students to learn about water resources.  Games like Water Sense and Beach Kids can be found at the EPA’s Water Science and Technology for Students webpage.  After learning more about World Water Day from these resources, I’m sure you will consider how treasured our clean water is the next time you are taking a shower or brushing your teeth. 

Shelby Egan is a student volunteer in the EPA’s Air and Radiation Division in Region 5, and is currently obtaining her Master’s degree in Urban Planning and Policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  She has a passion for protecting natural resources, cities she’s never been to and cooking any recipe by The Pioneer Woman. 

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