“Humanity May Face Choice By 2040: Conventional Energy or Drinking Water”
A set of studies based on three years of research concludes that by 2040, the need for drinking water and water for use in energy production will create dire shortages.
Conventional electricity generation is the largest source of water use in most countries. Water is used to cool power plants to keep them functional. Most power utilities don’t even record the amount of water they use.
The research, which included projections of the availability of water and the growth of the world’s population, found that by 2020, between 30 percent and 40 percent of the planet will no longer have direct access to clean drinking water. The problem could be made even worse if climate change accelerates, creating more heat and causing more water evaporation.