The New Luxury – Water

In many emerging nations, children are starving and dying due to lack of clean water.  As a “developed” nation, it certainly doesn’t seem that advanced for us to be getting water for free.   Meanwhile, two million people in the developing world are dying every year because they can’t access clean water.

Maybe we won’t have water fountains in the future.

It doesn’t make sense.   If there is a limited, precious resource, why should it flow freely to those who have the most access to it? And at the same time, be so costly to others who need it most?

I think we should have to buy our water, bottled or fountain.  It’s a cherished, expensive and rare commodity. Quite soon, and even by certain nations, water already is the new diamond.

The diamonds which are jewels are high end commodities, which are optional.  Yet water is not a “high-end commodity” that we can go without.

Our society is now realizing that the most prized and honored possessions in our world are things that we actually cannot possess…  Water is used, captured again, recycled in nature, and used again.  Unlike diamonds, it can’t fit in our jewelry box, where we take it out whenever we so desire.  Its beauty rests in its necessary part of our day to day.

Its beauty rests in the continuation of life.


Let’s do all we can today to conserve water or donate to make water available for someone else.


5 thoughts on “The New Luxury – Water

  1. Janet

    What are you thoughts on the fact that access to clean water is rare because of the corporatization and privatization of water? Although I agree with your point that those who do have clean water should value it as a luxury, I think it is important to also realize the power structures and politics that have created this reality.

    I do not think that the scarcity of water would be as drastic if water remained a natural resource and was not transformed into a commodity. The tendency for western corporations to monopolize on something so necessary for survival is quite startling and a bit disappointing, in fact.


    1. Pamela Hawley Post author

      Dear Janet,

      Thank you for your thoughtful comments. It’s a very interesting time for ‘water.’

      I was in Washington, D.C. this past weekend, and at the lunch place they had a large urn of tapwater. There is a new public initiative that allows people to drink tap water, and makes it prominently available in place of bottled water.

      Their point is that bottled water isn’t necessarily as clean, and that plastic bottles are slowing filling our earth up with mountains of plastic.

      At one point, I think companies responded to consumers and the market need: “We need clean water!” That’s understandable, from my viewpoint. People should have clean water. Yet the repercussions were not well understood. Now we seem to be switching back, and I am sure there are initiatives out there that work on purifying our free tapwater, so that we stem the tide of environmental degradation through the sale of plastic bottles.

      Yet Janet, I believe you may be saying something different. Please share with our viewers any examples of your view of privatization regarding water. We look forward to continuing this important discussion!



  2. Cindy Safronoff

    I am intruiged by a solution promoted by Earthship Biotecture. They are teaching people how to build homes which catch and store rainwater, rather than rely on municpal water systems or wells. They have proved it works out in the deserts of New Mexico. As a service project after the SE Asian Tsunami a team went to an island (Andaman Islands) where all the wells had been poluted. They showed people there how to build small simple houses out of the garbage laying around (like old empty water bottles) with roof rainwater catchment systems and a cistern below the living floor.

    They did a similar service project in Haiti after the earthquake.

    Local rain catchment is a good solution for the developing world. But also something municipal water managers in the developed world are considering encouraging too, as treatment and transportation of water through municpal water systems is among the largest uses of energy, and reliable water supply is not easy to expand as our population grows. As a science experiment, I am looking into switching to a rainwater system for my urban house.


    1. Pamela Hawley Post author

      Dear Cindy, thank you for such a wise contribution to Living and Giving. I am sure all our readers will benefit from knowing about these practical examples of capturing rainwater, as nature has already given us.

      Your points also show that we can often take out the middleman. We can be entrepreneurial and creative on our own. We can build sophisticated — or simple– structures to capture the rainwater. And I believe every amount of saving water counts.

      Cindy, I’ll also alert our UniversalGiving NGO Services team, which provides our giving and volunteer opportunities. This would be a great way for people to give a gift: “Give $50 to help a community save rainwater” — something to that effect. Who wouldn’t want to give the gift of water from nature’s source, and using it for good purpose. It’s certainly what it was intended for, to help the earth and those who are stewards of it.

      Thank you for a super contribution!



  3. Pingback: Water and Sustainability: The New-Old Idea of Rainwater Harvesting | Green My Bungalow

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