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World Water Day, March 22

The World's Water: Is There Enough? 

March 22, 1997
World Day for Water 

In 1992 the UN General Assembly designated March 22 of each year as the
World Day for Water to focus public attention on the emerging global
water crisis as the 21st century approaches. 

The celebration comes at a critical time for raising global awareness of
the vital role water plays in sustainable national development. Between
1900 and 1995 global water use increased by a factor of six, which is
more than double the rate of population growth during the same period. 

Of all the water on earth, 97.5 percent is salt water, found primarily
in the oceans. The remaining 2.5 percent is freshwater, almost all of
which is stored in the ice caps of Antarctica and Greenland, and as
fossil groundwater. The most accessible freshwater resources are in
lakes, reservoirs, rivers and streams. These resources amount to only
0.26 percent of the total amount of freshwater in storage, or 0.007
percent of all water on earth that is renewable and available for use on
a sustainable basis. 

The Great Lakes hold more than 6 quadrillion gallons of water, about
one-fifth of the world’s fresh surface water supply.

Christine Manninen, ADVISOR Editor			
Great Lakes Commission	
Argus II Bldg., 400 Fourth St. 	 
Ann Arbor, MI 48103		 
Phone 313.665.9135, Fax 313.665.4370	
E-mail: manninen@glc.org 
Web: http://www.glc.org