Water resources are some of the most important resources in the world since they are usually the basis of life itself and many other aspects in life. As a resource, most of the water resources in the world are in danger of extinction or at least depression since there are a lot of activities taking place which affect them directly or indirectly. Some of these which results to most of the and chemicals which have an adverse effect on the environment.
Pollution and deforestation are other factors that have been found to affect water resources so enormously and which have caused a lot of inadequacy of water in many regions around the world. However, the major factor that has been looked at as being the main cause of depression and sometimes total extinction of water resources is the effects of global warming, which have a direct impact on the global water resources (Namu 1).
An article was featured in the Journal of American Water Resources Association (JAWRA) focusing on water resource issues. The article was titled Alaskas Freshwater Resources: and International Interests. The article was released on February 2011 and is available online from the JAWRA website.
The articles main aim was to discuss the different factors affecting water resources in Alaska and in the world at large and to identify the different strategies that may be utilized by different states so as to reduce the problem and effects of fresh water shortages.
The article hence tries to find out the factors underlying the shortage of fresh water in Alaska, even as it is a region with fewer water problems compared to other states, and also identifying the possible results of lack of proper management of the water resources in the state (Lincoln 1).
The article also seeks to find out if there are ways in which the water resources may be managed properly so as to reduce the instances of water shortage. Finally, the paper tries to identify similar problems in the other regions around the world and how those problems may also be solved (Altaweel & Kalb 143-147).
There are a few technical terms that have been used in the article that may need some explanation for ease of understanding. Social-ecological factors are those factors that constitute ecology and have a direct effect on the society in that given ecology. Ecology is a common habitat found in a given region with unique and prevailing environmental conditions different from those found in other regions.
Water use is a terminology that has been used to refer to the different ways in which water is utilized within ecology, both by the environment, living things as well as the society itself.
Climate change is the gradual change of the climatic conditions within a given region resulting to different characteristics of the climate in the region. Resource development is a term used to refer to the different ways in which water resources may be harnessed and managed so as to ensure they are properly utilized, protected and preserved for the future.
The issue addressed in the article occurs in Alaska, one of the states in USA. The water resource issue has been noted in this region since there has been poor management of the water resources and in return there has been noted some problems with availability of fresh water in the region. It is clear that the current methods of water resource management are not working any more and there is a need for establishment of new strategies.
Though the extent of the impact of the poor management of water resources in the region is still at a small scale, the rate at which water resources are depreciating is alarming. This is mainly so because the region has been known to be one of the richest regions in terms of fresh water resources.
Hence, if there are issues in the region, then it shows how far the effects of different factors have affected global water resources. The problem of water resource issues in the region has mainly affected the non-human constituents in the ecology such as some species of animals, plants and trees, a factor that may extend to human beings if the conditions persist (Altaweel & Kalb 146-153).
The article has proposed different ways of ensuring there is better management of the water resources. First, there is a need to establish new policies which will be consistent with the factors affecting the environment at the current age (Benny 1). Most of the policies in use are ancient and outdated and hence may not be able to address the current problems.
Also, there is a need for establishment of more institutions which will be aimed at carrying out research and establishment of strategies for ensuring proper management of the water resources in the region (Altaweel & Kalb 157).
There are many other regions around the world which are susceptible to the same problem of water resource problems. Some of the main regions at risk are the Asian and African regions. In these regions, the same problems like those in Alaska have resulted to the problems, though there are other underlying factors.
Hence, in trying to properly manage the water resources in these regions, there is a need for establishment of policies and institutions that will protect and manage them (Namu 1). Moreover, there is a need for community participation in environmental management especially in reduction of deforestation and in reforestation strategies which will improve the conditions of water resources (Obera 1).
Three questions arise in reading the article and relate to the management of water resources. First, should we sit down and mourn the effects of global warming or is there anything we can do to save our water resources? Also, should then government policies be blamed for all the water resource issues or should everyone be blamed. Finally, who should be responsible for management and restoration of the water resources to normal conditions?