How is the hydrosphere endangered?


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The hydrosphere includes the total amount of water we have on this planet, including the surface water (in rivers, lakes, ponds, oceans, snow etc.), subsurface water (groundwater) and atmospheric water (water vapor, etc.). Our water is endangered due to two primary reasons: pollution and over-exploitation. We are polluting our water sources at a very rapid pace by discharging municipal and industrial liquid and solid wastes into them without treatment (or with little treatment). The rivers in many countries are so polluted that they resemble drains and are a health hazard either through consumption of their water or through contact with skin (during bathing, etc.). Our water resources are also over-exploited because of our increasing population, especially in developing and underdeveloped countries. Ownership and sharing of water is another cause of worry in many such areas. Thus, our hydrosphere is under severe threat and unfortunately we cannot make new water (unlike electricity). Someone has wisely suggested that water is going to be the chief cause of the next world war.

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