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And God said … Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place … and it was so … and God saw that it was good. Genesis 1: 9-10.

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Presentation on theme: "And God said … Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place … and it was so … and God saw that it was good. Genesis 1: 9-10."— Presentation transcript:

1 And God said … Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place … and it was so … and God saw that it was good. Genesis 1: 9-10

2 The Privatization of Water Should there really be a price to life?

3 The Privatization of Water Then why should we stand by as people try to make money from what already belongs to us all by right?

4 Facts About Water Each and every life of the 6.5 billion people on Earth relies on water. Each and every life of the 6.5 billion people on Earth relies on water. A UN study states that nearly 70% of the worlds population is without clean water. Nearly 6,000 children die every day due to a lack of clean water. That is equal to one child every fifteen seconds. Even though over 2/3 of the planets surface is covered by water, only % of it is suitable for human consumption.

5 The Problem The governments of many developing countries are selling their state-owned water companies, hoping to reduce their increasing financial debts. The media leads many to believe that we deserve the best, and bottled water is presented as an improvement over tap water. We stand by while these things happen. If we took a stand against it, we could improve the lives of many.

6 Is Commercially Bottled Water A Good Idea? Corporations have convinced many people of the wisdom of consuming a better form of water - in bottles. Corporations have convinced many people of the wisdom of consuming a better form of water - in bottles. The water contained in these bottles, however, may not be any better. In fact, many bottling companies just sell filtered tap water taken from municipal water sources! Moreover, consuming safer water taken from someplace else does little to provoke people to try to keep their own local sources of water clean.

7 Are Soft-Plastic Water Bottles A Good Idea? Studies have shown that the plastic used in such bottles can release toxins into the water they contain and into landfill sites where they often end up. This represents a potential increase in the risk of cancer. Studies have shown that the plastic used in such bottles can release toxins into the water they contain and into landfill sites where they often end up. This represents a potential increase in the risk of cancer. Some media sources would have people believe that our tap water is unsafe, or at least not up to the standards we deserve. This advice, however, is based more on their desire to sell to us their product rather than on reliable research.

8 Are Soft-Plastic Water Bottles A Good Idea? Studies also have shown that unless properly sterilized, the repeated re-use of soft-plastic bottles can present a health risk through the transmission of potentially harmful bacteria that could breed in the bottles. Studies also have shown that unless properly sterilized, the repeated re-use of soft-plastic bottles can present a health risk through the transmission of potentially harmful bacteria that could breed in the bottles.

9 What about the Poor? Some people will argue that putting a price on water will increase peoples respect for it, thus reducing pollution and waste. Some people will argue that putting a price on water will increase peoples respect for it, thus reducing pollution and waste. On the other hand, charging for water only hurts the poor, those who can least afford to pay for it. This is increasingly creating a two-tiered world, made up of those who have access to clean drinking water and those who do not. Could we be stealing clean water from the poor to satisfy our own selfish desires?

10 Water belongs to everyone and to no one. Water is not a product like a chocolate bar or a soda. It is here for everyones use. Water is not a product like a chocolate bar or a soda. It is here for everyones use. Adding a price greatly reduces the number of people who can access potable water. Within the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), officials are debating the issue of whether or not water is a commodity. This should not be an issue; water is a vital resource, like the air we breathe, to be freely shared among all.

11 Should we trust private corporations to take care of our water? The business of water currently generates 200 billion dollars a year. The business of water currently generates 200 billion dollars a year. Companies see water as (o)ne of the worlds great business opportunities. It promises to be to the 21st century what oil was to the 20th. – Fortune Magazine. Profits tend to be given to shareholders instead of being re-invested into improving water systems.

12 Why shouldnt we trust businesses to take care of our water? Privatization of such a vital resource reduces democratic accountability; only shareholders would have any say in a companys affairs. Privatization of such a vital resource reduces democratic accountability; only shareholders would have any say in a companys affairs. The fact is, business activity is targeted at making money and does not necessarily have the welfare of the people foremost in mind. Citizens involvement in water management decisions is greatly reduced.

13 Where Do We Stand? Canada contains roughly 20% of all of the worlds fresh water. Canada contains roughly 20% of all of the worlds fresh water. Each Canadian uses, on average, approximately 300 litres of water per day. This would fill about two bathtubs! This contrasts with 20 litres per day used by the average citizen in developing countries. We have the power for social change. Will we use that power? Why not start now?

14 Make the Governments Responsible If a government hands over responsibility for water to corporations, they must ensure that the needs of the people are met and their rights fully respected. If a government hands over responsibility for water to corporations, they must ensure that the needs of the people are met and their rights fully respected. Because government regulations have too often failed to insure this, over a billion peoples access to clean water has been compromised. We need to demand that governments take action, doing everything within their power to make sure that corporate practices respect both the needs of the people and the environment.

15 What Can You Do? Refuse to purchase bottled water and use it only when there are no suitable alternatives. Refuse to purchase bottled water and use it only when there are no suitable alternatives. Use alternate sources, like fountains, or prepare ahead by filling your own glass or mug from your own tap. Get involved. Send letters and sign petitions to voice your opinion to government and corporate officials. Support the efforts of one of the many international organizations working for this cause.

16 More Things You Can Do … By speaking up now, you will be helping the cause, encouraging consumers, corporations and the government to use their powers and influence to prevent the coming of an age where the lack of water will be the root cause of even more suffering, especially among the poor. Talk about the issue with your own family and friends and educate them to change their water usage habits. Talk to local business owners and large corporations, expressing your concerns and supporting those who do change.

17 Still More Ideas … Reduce the amount of water you use in your daily routines. Reduce the amount of water you use in your daily routines. Promote the use of reusable glasses or mugs in your school among students and faculty, and work toward the elimination of bottled water in your vending machines and cafeterias. Plan ahead and provide water in pitchers where there is a meeting or any gathering of people.

18 Thank You For Caring About This Important Global Issue …of all the social and natural resource crises we humans face, the water crisis lives at the heart of our survival and that of our planet Earth. The United Nations World Water Development Report, 2003

19 But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream. Amos 5: 24

20 PowerPoint Presentation brought to you by … The Committee for Social Justice of the Algonquin and Lakeshore Catholic District School Board Based on a design by: Greg Watkinson, Grade 11 St. Paul Catholic Secondary School, Trenton, Ontario 2006


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