Researchers Detail Humanity’s Water Footprint

Researchers from the University of Twente in the Netherlands have published a study estimating the scale and patterns of humanity’s water consumption, or its water footprint. The study is the most detailed estimate to date.

Large-scale livestock production is a large consumer of our water resources. (Photo credit: Bernard Pollack)

Many everyday items contain surprisingly high water footprints—it takes 2,700 liters (713 gallons) to make a cotton t-shirt and 2,400 liters (634 gallons) to make a hamburger—so it is useful to understand issues like water use and scarcity when making consumer decisions.

Check out this National Geographic article, written by Worldwatch senior fellow and  Freshwater Fellow of the National Geographic Society, Sandra Postel, that discusses the study’s results.

To purchase State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.

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