November 3, 2013

Sunday Science Snippet

Today I give you the story behind Waterproof and what you can do to help conserve water.
As you probably already know, I work as a scientist in my other life. Over the years, my research has often focused on the conservation and restoration of aquatic species. And a lot of that time, their issues have stemmed from contaminated water or excess pollution in the environment.


For several years, I’ve wanted to write a book about what would happen to the world when humans began fighting over drinking water. And I say began, but really, it has already begun. Do you know you have to purchase water rights in some states out west when you buy property?

Have you ever experienced water restrictions in your neighborhood? Or did you know that several countries are already considered water-stressed? It’s happening, and just to show you how scary it is, here are some facts to consider: 

1 billion people currently don’t have access to clean drinking water.

3.4 million people die from water related diseases each year.

By 2025, two-thirds of the world’s population will live in a water-stressed county.

An American taking a 5 minute shower uses more water than the average person living in a developing country uses in an entire day.

Over 260 river basins are shared by two or more countries without adequate legal or institutional arrangements regarding water utilization.

By 2020, California will face a water shortage as great as the amount they consume today.



Worried yet? I know I am. So anyway…back to Waterproof.  What will happen when the water disappears? How will society react? What unique science may evolve out of this type of tragedy? All questions I’ve asked myself for years and then had a chance to answer (or hint at) in this book.

I also wanted to highlight the idea of friendship and romance rising up out of the chaos. At a time when the survivors have to fight for every second of their life, I thought it would be nice for them to find some type of comfort in their closest friends. No time for love triangles or petty games when you’re being hunted!

So as you read this book and start thinking more about the water shortages (as I did!), check out these sites to see what little things you can do so that some day we aren’t deserters running for our lives!



  1. Fallon Vaughn - great post, loved the fact something so real and troubling inspired Waterproof and now you can use it as a platform to inform fans of this need to conserve. I will try to apply all I can.

  2. Thanks Fallon! I definitely think about this every time I brush my teeth or take a shower! :)

  3. Your post is fascinating, as is the book. Water management will be an increasingly complex resource that will be critical to manage. I use a barrel to collect rain for my garden. Yet, in some states this practice is not legal because water rights mandate that water flow unfettered.

    1. That's right, Gayle. It's hard to imagine a world without "free" water, but without proper managment and conservation...we could face this with our lifetime - and that's scary!


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