USA Today recently ran an article which claims “more than half of humanity will be living with water shortages, depleted fisheries and polluted coastlines within 50 years because of a worldwide water crisis.” The report, which cited the United Nations as a source, is flat out wrong. Here’s why.
The report says the “rise of coastal waters because of climate changes” will cause freshwater sources to be contaminated and unusable. However according to Swedish geologist and physicist Nils-Axel Mörner, this is “nothing but a colossal scare story.” Dr. Mörner is the former chairman of the INQUA International Commission on Sea Level Change and for “35 years has been using every known scientific method to study sea levels all over the globe.”
“Despite fluctuations down as well as up, the sea is not rising,” he says. “It hasn’t risen in 50 years.” If there is any rise in the next century it will “not be more than 10cm (four inches), with an uncertainty of plus or minus 10cm”. The London Telegraph claims “the reason why Dr Mörner, formerly a Stockholm professor, is so certain that these claims about sea level rise are 100 per cent wrong is that they are all based on computer model predictions, whereas his findings are based on ‘going into the field to observe what is actually happening in the real world’.”
Another part of the report cites “the deterioration of coral reefs” due to global warming. First of all, how does this have anything to do with water supply? Secondly the data that global warming is causing coral reef decay comes from a Greenpeace report titled “Pacific in Peril.” Greenpeace is known for their not-so-factual sensationalism more than scientific research.
The report goes on to complain about the decline in size of the Aral Sea, Lake Chad, and Iraq’s marshlands. The Aral Sea has been slowly shrinking for the last several years. Scientists claim global warming is the cause. However, local chief Youssouf Mbodou Mbami says, “Little by little, the lake has fallen away. Our grandparents told us the problem is a cyclical phenomenon, that every 30 or 40 years, the waters shrink and then come back.” Climate change is also blamed for the shrinkage of Lake Chad. However National Geographic researchers have found that human activities are at fault. “The one thing for sure, it is not currently, lack of water. Even the BBC admits that “other factors” include “irrigation and the damming of rivers feeding the lake for hydro-electric schemes.” As for Iraq’s marshlands, although they suffered a decline under dictator Suddam Hussein due to calculated draining by his regime, a CBS 60 minutes team found last year that “the region is coming back to life since Saddam fell in 2003,” says Jenny Dubin, producer of the show.
Although water shortages is a major issue for many states, on a global level, we are not going to run out of water any time soon due to global warming.