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The Ripple Effect

The Ripple Effect

The Fate of Freshwater in the Twenty-First Century

  • freshman reading
Will there be enough drinkable water to satisfy future demand? What is the state of our water infrastructure—both the pipes that bring us freshwater and the levees that keep it out? How secure is our water supply from natural disasters and terrorist attacks? Can we create new sources for our water supply through scientific innovation? Is water a right like air or a commodity like oil? Will the wars of the twenty-first century be fought over water?

As the climate warms and world population grows, demand for water has surged, but supplies of freshwater are static or dropping, and new threats to water quality appear every day. The Ripple Effect is Alex Prud’homme’s vividly written and engaging inquiry into the fate of freshwater in the twenty-first century.

Like Daniel Yergin’s classic The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money & Power, Prud’homme’s The Ripple Effect is a masterwork of investigation and dramatic narrative. Prud’homme introduces readers to an array of colorful, obsessive, brilliant—and sometimes shadowy— characters through whom these issues come alive. The Ripple Effect will change the way we think about the water we drink.
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  • Scribner | 
  • 448 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416535461 | 
  • April 2012
List Price $17.00
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The Fate of Fresh Water

Alex Prud'homme's remarkable work of investigative journalism shows how fresh water is the pressing global issue of the twenty-first century.

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Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1
The Defining Resource


Thousands have lived without love—not one without water.

—W. H. Auden

It is scarcity and plenty that makes the vulgar take things to be precious or worthless; they call a diamond very beautiful because it is like pure water, and then would not exchange one for ten barrels of water.

—Galileo Galilei, 1632

THE PARADOX OF WATER

The received wisdom is that America has some of the best water in the world—meaning that we have the cleanest and most plentiful supply of H2O anywhere, available in an endless stream, at whatever... see more

Articles About This Book

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Posted on Tips on Healthy Living

Posted by Alex Prudhomme

Not only is bottled water more expensive, costing more per gallon than gasoline, it's loosely regulated by the FDA, and bottlers are virtually free to mislead consumers on the origins of their water. Get the facts from The Ripple Effect: The Fate...

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