When the Rivers Run Dry may be considered one of those eye-opening books that might just stay with you for a very long time. In the book, veteran science correspondent Fred Pearce focuses on the dire state of the world’s rivers to deliver the complete portrait of the growing world water crisis and its ramification for all of us.
The author manages to illustrate extremely well our current struggle with water supplies due to its increasing demand. In order to develop this extensive study, Pearce traveled to more than thirty countries, examining the current state of specific water sources, like the Colorado River in the United States, the Indus River in Pakistan, and the Yellow and Yangzte rivers in China. Digging down into the historic dimensions of the crisis, and showing the complex origins of extraction projects, Pearce makes it clear that the situation is tricky to say the least. When it comes down to it, more and bigger is not the way to go. We have to invest in greater efficiency and maximize the use of the water supplies we currently have. Use it for social benefit, rather than a narrow self- interest.
Favorite quote from When the River Runs Dry: “And it requires us to find ways of storing water without wrecking the environment, of restoring water to rivers and refilling lakes and wetlands without leaving people thirsty, and of sharing waters rather than fighting over them. It requires us to go with the flow. And to do it before the rivers finally run dry.”