Could Oil Pipelines Solve America’s Water Crisis?
Big oil could help tackle the water shortage in the western United States. Oil pipelines repurposing existing infrastructure to help transport clean water to the areas most in need. Innovations such as this highlight how oil and gas majors are relevant. This includes their infrastructure and knowledge. It will always be relevant even in a country continually pushing for decarbonization and renewables.
Severe weather events appear to be happening on a more regular basis. This hitting the same areas of the U.S. year after year with flooding and drought. It is not the only thing that the western United States needs to be concerned about. At present, Louisiana is facing severe water shortages. Groundwater levels in the state are decreasing more rapidly. Sadly, other areas across the country and underground aquifers are at an all-time low.
This is largely due to decades of heavy use, the lack of regulation in water use. This is by the industrial and the agricultural sectors, and little action by legislative bodies.
In addition, following the devastating effects of Hurricane Ida, much of Louisiana has been left without power and clean water for weeks. This reflects the poor resilience of the existing utility infrastructure in the wake of a severe weather event, an issue that Louisiana has been facing continually over the last decade. This also adds to the existing scarcity issue, as a greater investment is needed to strengthen the West’s water system.
The reason for the current water crisis, following Ida, is largely down to the destruction of power lines needed to provide water systems with the electricity to pump groundwater and run treatment parts. While the state mandates that all water systems must have backup generators, this rule has been largely ignored, and those that do exist have failed due to ongoing power cuts following the storm.
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Source: Oil Price
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