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National Interests: Priorities and Security
 

Environmentally sustainable management of water resources

Vol. 11, Iss. 2, JANUARY 2015

Available online: 7 January 2015

Subject Heading: STRATEGY OF ECONOMIC ADVANCEMENT

JEL Classification: 

Pages: 22-35

Gribova E.V. Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics (MESI), Moscow, Russian Federation
elenagribova@mail.ru

Importance At the present time, the center of gravity of global problems is gradually shifting to the issues of management of natural resources and, in particular, to the availability of water resources. At the end of the last century and in the beginning of the current century, the intensification of water use became the most urgent problem for humanity. At the same time, in some cases the shortage of water acts as a limiting factor for the technological progress and balanced economic growth.
     Objectives The main purpose of the article is to draw attention to the importance of the sound stewardship of water resources for the sustainable development at regional, national and international levels. As the key tasks, I consider the following: review of the main causes of the looming water crisis; study of the consequences of reducing the amount and the deterioration of water quality as an economic resource and an integral part of any ecosystem; providing classification of countries in terms of per capita water availability. The paper also attempts to provide systematization of concrete steps undertaken by the international community to improve the issue of clean drinking water supply and facilitating an equitable access to appropriate resources.
     Methods In the article, using a set of statistical and econometric methods, I analyze different economic aspects of the rational global water consumption. My article develops a territorial map of the dynamics of per capita scarcity of fresh water in the countries across the world.
     Results I pay special attention to the direct correlation between the global water supply and population size, which facilitate identifying the existing interstate inequality of fresh water distribution and consumption.
     Conclusions and Relevance I came to a conclusion that presently the world comes close to the problem of global water shortage at significantly increased technogenic demands for its use. Over the past century, the water-intensive production processes and human activity have increased 12 times. Currently, the global water consumption is far ahead of the natural fresh water regeneration. Degradation of the multitude of water bodies is a striking indicator of global ecological troubles.

Keywords: water resources, sweet water, ecological deficit, global problems, global water supply, sustainable development

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