Sustainable,Resilient Water & Energy Futures: New Ethics and Choices, Urban Nexus Strategies
Open access peer-reviewed chapter - ONLINE FIRST
By Josh Sperling and Will Sarni
A safe, secure and affordable water future—for life, health, economy—are foundational outcomes from a new form of ethics for water stewardship and energy management. Current business as usual in water and energy systems have not led to sustainable, healthy nor resilient pathways for urban and rural communities alike. Today, an estimated 400 million people live in cities with significant water shortages. This is while 25% of water is currently lost before even used in urban areas (up to 60% in some cities) due to aging infrastructure. In addition, on average, only 10% of wastewater is treated before returning to water bodies in developing countries. By 2040, more than 66% of the world’s populations could suffer from severe water shortages; and by 2050, an 80% increase in urban water demand (over current levels) may result in one billion city dwellers and 36% (one in three) of cities expected to face water crises. A crisis is often a catalyst for innovation and this chapter is a call to cities to enable strategic responses—moving away from legacy ‘siloed’ infrastructures, over-allocated water resources and emerging ethical dilemmas to integrated water- and energy-related urban nexus strategies.
The world’s aquifers are being depleted at rapid rates due to growing populations and unsustainable urbanization practices, including land use sprawl and ever-increasing water and energy resource demands. According to recent analyses, an estimated 400 million people already live in cities with significant water shortages today, and with an 80% increase in urban water demand (over today’s levels) projected by 2050, 1 billion city dwellers and 36% of (one in three) cities are expected to face water crises by 2050 . Even earlier, by 2040, more than 66% of the world’s populations could suffer from sever water shortage—all while 25% of water is lost before even used in urban areas (up to 60% in some cities), due to poor maintenance or infrastructure. In addition, on average, only 10% of wastewater is treated before returning to water bodies in developing countries
To Read the Full Chapter visit: https://www.intechopen.com/online-first/sustainable-and-resilient-water-and-energy-futures-from-new-ethics-and-choices-to-urban-nexus-strate.