Where does water go?

Here is how the different sectors of human activities have an impact on water consumption.

Agriculture: 70%. Only 17% of all farmed lands is irrigated yet the latter produce 40% of all food we consume and absorb up to 2,500 km3 of water a year.
Industry: 22%. Improvements in current technology allow to save more water in comparison to technologies applied in past years. For example, in the Thirties, to produce a ton of steel occurred between 60 and 100 tons of water, today 6 are sufficient. Aluminium, which today is often used as a substitute for steel, requires even less. We shouldn’t neglect the fact that, in powerhouses, cooling water is recycled.
Civil uses: 8%. In some industrialized countries consumption of water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene is lowering. Before 1994, for example, WCs in US were using, in general, about 20 litres of water per flush, in comparison to 6 litres used today. Also washing machines today, those with front loading, consume 39% less water in comparison to old top loading washing machines.

Special reports

  • 15 April 2014

    How rich are we …. in blue gold?

    Water footprint, water availability and use on a planetary scale...

    26 February 2014

    How much water is on your plate?

    Water footprint and water consumption...

    13 May 2018

    Small steps, great footprints

    Have you ever wondered how much space is taken up by an apple or a steak?...

  • 7 October 2021

    Water grabbing

    “Clear, sweet fresh water,” wrote Petrarch, by many considered a precursor of Italian literature. Before him, St. Francis dedicated two…

    17 May 2021

    Lost ice

    According to a study conducted by a French and Swiss research team recently published in the leading journal Nature, continental…

    15 April 2021

    Oceans of plastic

    The invisible invasion of microplastics...

  • 26 December 2019

    Life in Antarctica

    How is it possible to live and work in Antarctica...

    10 December 2019

    In the fridge of the world

    Antarctica is a continent with a very particular charm...

    9 October 2018

    The forms of water

    Drinking a glass of water is the most simplest act in the world. Or rather, in this world. Very special…

  • 15 April 2014

    How rich are we …. in blue gold?

    Water footprint, water availability and use on a planetary scale...

    26 February 2014

    How much water is on your plate?

    Water footprint and water consumption...

  • 13 May 2018

    Small steps, great footprints

    Have you ever wondered how much space is taken up by an apple or a steak?...

    7 October 2021

    Water grabbing

    “Clear, sweet fresh water,” wrote Petrarch, by many considered a precursor of Italian literature. Before him, St. Francis dedicated two…

  • 17 May 2021

    Lost ice

    According to a study conducted by a French and Swiss research team recently published in the leading journal Nature, continental…

    15 April 2021

    Oceans of plastic

    The invisible invasion of microplastics...

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Facts