The first step in a project is to select a problem that is important to me.
One of the most important question/problem areas for humanity is water and especially freshwater. The available amount of freshwater is decreasing and the problems caused by this are increasing. The risk associated with freshwater scarcity is increasing, meaning that the probability of a decrease in available freshwater and an increase in the impact of the ensuing problems is increasing.
The World Resources Institute is a global research organization that works to further a healthy environment. One of the topics on which it focuses is water risk. In the water section of the institutes website there is a video called “Measuring and Mapping Water Risk”. The url is: http://www.wri.org/resources/videos/whats-big-idea-measuring-and-mapping-water-risk
An accompanying text states:
“Water scarcity is one of the defining issues of the 21st century. …In its Global Risks 2013 Report, the World Economic Forum identified water supply crises as one of the highest impact and most likely threats facing the planet.”
One of the panes of the video show the risk of water supply crises relative to other serious risks.
The risk of an event is represented by a combination of its likelihood and its impact.
The risk of water supply crises is repesented by the likelihood of such crises versus their impact at a certain point in time.
In its report the World Economic Forum ranks water supply crises as being more likely and having a greater impact globally than the risk of food shortage crises, terrorism, cyber attacks, and geophysical destruction.
Water supply risk is not just about scarcity of drinking water. Water scarcity causes many other serious problems, for example low water levels in waterways.
Fresh water supply crises are clearly of great importance and it is imperative to increase knowledge about them by generating new data by research, generating new knowledge from the data, and spreading this knowledge. It is also imperative to apply the knowledge to making decisions and implementing the decisions by actions designed to decrease the risk of water crises.
In view of this I shall consider starting a freshwater project in the hope that I may contribute to an increase in the knowledge about such crises and thereby decrease the risk of their occurrrence.