Ever since I was a young lad, I was fascinated with water and its properties.
My grandparents gave me a book on sustainability for my birthday when I was 10 years old and I developed a love for nature.
It wasn’t difficult at all, as I was raised on a farm and already had an affinity for the land and animals.
I remember doing a school project on grains and became aware of the need for cycling crops in a rotation, as some pulled nutrients out of the ground and some put nutrients back into the ground.
Learning about sustainable practices on the farm as a kid gave me a firm understanding of working with nature as opposed to against it.
Why Is Water So Important?
Water, quite simply sustains life in all its forms.
The earth’s surface contains around 70% water, from the oceans, rivers, lakes and streams through to vapour in the air, ice caps, glaciers and groundwater aquifers.
Humans are made up of between 50% to 70% water depending on factors like age and sex.
We can sustain life without food for long periods of time, but without water, we start to experience the effects of dehydration quite quickly.
Our vital organs can overheat from our bodies trying to regulate its core temperature, which if left untreated, proves fatal over the course of just days.
We all know that plants won’t survive without some form of water. A lot of plants are made up primarily of water so need to maintain it to keep their cell structure alive.
Some may pull water from the atmosphere or the soil, but they still need water.
Animals also need water, although some like camels, giraffes and the kangaroo rat can go for long periods of time between drinks.
Sustainable Living Through the Ages
From prehistoric times right through to recent times, humans had no choice but to live sustainably and in line with their local habitat.
There were no fridges or freezers to stock up from an abundant hunt, unless you consider the likes of the Inuit people who had access to ice.
They still only gathered enough to survive the harsh winter, as decimating a herd of animals means there’ll be nothing to eat next season.
Aboriginal communities in Australia have been living off and caring for their country for 60,000+ years to ensure that each year, they will have access to plentiful food and water sources, even if it meant being nomadic. They only took what they needed and greed wasn’t an option.
Fast forward to today and consider how sustainably you choose to live.
Do you reduce your footprint on the environment by recycling, reusing or reducing?
Do you avoid single use plastics at all costs or accept that they’re a part of modern life?
Does convenience take priority over morality?
It’s ok to answer any way you want, but if everyone chooses to live unsustainably, mother nature has a way of pushing back. We’re seeing it in Australia with the drying continent and raging bushfires. Mass clearing of the land has created its own problems. Disruption to the natural order of the environment means water no longer gets held in-situ like it once did.
Without water, we can’t sustain life.
What Can You Do?
It’s like the age old saying goes, one person doing a lot won’t make much of a difference, but many people doing a little will make a huge difference.
Being aware and taking action on simple things like composting your food waste, even if it means digging a hole in the garden and burying it to break down.
Cutting down on packaging whenever possible means less waste to landfill and less emissions to the environment.
Re-purposing old items instead of throwing them out – you can offer them free to someone who wants to do it if you’re time poor.
We all have a responsibility to take action towards living more sustainably.
There are countless hours of information on the internet to guide you through many of the processes.
My goal of building a permaculture garden is back in my sights again now. I can’t wait to be growing our own nutrient rich, great tasting food in suburbia, as its been proven over and over again that you don’t need much space to produce abundant crops.
Without balance, everything eventually collapses, so keep that in mind next time you’re shopping for convenience over sustainability.