The image above shows where the planet has becoming more green, and those areas that are losing ground cover. Where there is little change the colour is a dull beige or light green. This is why the Amazon basin and the Congo are not a vivid as China and India.
For it is China and India that is the big story here. According to NASA these two countries Lead the Way in Greening
over the past 20 years following an unprecedented push by the two countries to reverse desertification and increase agricultural yields.
China has planted out 100 Billion trees over vast stretches of semi-desert on the edges of the Gobi Desert in a project called the Green Great Wall
started in 1978 and due to be completed in 2050. There are problems and set backs but the scale of the ambition is huge. Planting trees in desert areas may deplete ground water, and change the ecology in ways that are unsustainable. But the image shows that there has been some measurable success.
In India the greening has largely been due to a new 'green revolution' the involves the pumping of ground water to expand agriculture. But this is not sustainable either
. New solutions are required if the greening is not to brown off as climate change alters rainfall patterns and increases temperatures across the region. Ironically subsidised electricity is partly to blame for the increase in ground water extraction as it is cheaper to pump water. Careful management of resources is required.
It is therefore of significant interest that Arizona has managed to balance population growth with the water usage
and keep usage to 1957 levels even as the population has grown from 1 million to 7 million people. A focus on saving water
and a more balanced use of water and selection of water sources has enabled this, Arizona aims to extract only as much ground water as is replenished from natural sources so that this resource can be enjoyed by future generations.
Our Adaptiv post on Water Upcycling and Micro Grids
is a good primer on our interests in this area. We'll discuss more on how we will bring these adaptive water reuse systems to market in a future post.