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Global Community Impact on Water Shortage: Article Analysis

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Environmental Studies
Wordcount: 2645 words Published: 4th Sep 2017

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MA447 Global Management Issues

Taking Sides Worksheet

Student Name:

Jennifer R. Thomas

Takings Sides Article Number and Name:

Article 2.4

Can the Global Community Successfully Confront the Global Water Shortage?

Work Cite: Easton, Thomas A. Taking Sides. Boston: McGraw-Hill Education Create, 2014. Print.




What qualifications does the author have for writing the YES article on this subject? (This may also apply to quotes within the article.)

William Wheeler, the author of Global Water Crisis: Too Little, Too Much or Lack of a Plan? “is a reporter and contributor to The Christian Science Monitor and the Pulitzer Center, among other publications.” (p.87, Easton) William Wheeler has a Master’s Degree in Journalism and International Affairs from Columbia and has a background in political affairs in Africa, Southeast Asia and the Middle East and immigrant detention in New York City and Virginia. He was the recipient of the Earth Journalism Award in 2009. He partnered with Anna-Katarina Gravgaard on a report on water politics and climate change.


When and where the YES article was first published? Does this affect its credibility?

The article, “Global Water Crisis: Too Little, Too Much, or Lack of a Plan?” (Easton) Was published on December 2, 2012, by The Christian Science Monitor. The article was a recently published article, 2012, and William Wheeler has a good background in politics, specifically giving some focus to the politics of water, for which he received an award as noted in the article, http://www.bu.edu/cghd/files/2011/04/Disaster-Conference-Speaker-Bios.pdf

What qualifications does the author have for writing the NO article on this subject? (This may also apply to quotes within the article.)

Stewart M. Patrick “is a senior fellow and director of the International Institutions and Global Governance Program at The Council on Foreign Relations.” (p. 89, Easton) The following are a list of his expert experiences according to http://www.cfr.org/experts/international-institutions-global-governance-multilateral-institutions-un-failed-states-sovereignty/stewart-m-patrick/b5863

  • Multilateral cooperation, International Institutions, and Global Governance
  • United Nations
  • Transnational Threats
  • Foreign Assistance
  • Post-conflict reconstruction

Stewart was a graduate of Stanford University.

When and where the NO article was first published? Does this affect its credibility?

The article, “The Coming Global Water Crisis. What Happens When Demands for this Essential Resource Starts Exceeding Supply in many Parts of the World?” (Easton), was published on May 9, 2012, in the Atlantic magazine. The author has a good knowledge and background, especially with an interest of weak and failing states. Having said that, and with the article somewhat new, I would say that the publication and the author both are credible.


See information at the end of this worksheet about creating effective arguments.

Students are required to address the issue by exploring both articles and both sides of the argument.



  • William Wheeler, the author of the yes argument, believes that supply or lack thereof, is not a real concern but that it is more about valuing water and how it is used.
  • There is just as much water in the world now as there always has been, water supply has not decreased. The evaporation process has not changed and water is still cycled through the water cycle. Meaning that water is evaporated into the air, it then rains, in lakes, rivers and freezes in the glaciers, plants absorb it and the process starts all over.
  • Water is being used up quicker than it can be replaced.
  • Droughts give reason to fear a water crisis.
  • The phrase “Global Water Crisis” leaves the impression that there is a major water crisis/shortage.
  • Too much water can be just as devastating as not having enough water.
  • “Water feeds crops, powers cities, cools computer servers and is key to the manufacturing of everything from clothes to cars” (p. 84)
  • Increase in population will increase demand for water.
  • The better a region is doing economically, the more water they demand all due to the consumption of more meat rather than wheat. Livestock, in which the meat comes from, needs more water than wheat does.
  • Water Resource Group suggest that by 2030 almost half of the world population will be hit with a severe water shortage and by 2050, 1 in 5 developing countries will too.
  • Water shortage is also due to too many tube wells draining the water.
  • Human are living beyond their means, meaning that they are consuming more water than they really have available and at a higher rate than water is being replenished.
  • Leaking infrastructure are also a reason for water shortage.
  • Climate change, increase in global grain prices and droughts, some caused by record high temperatures, are contributing factors to water shortage.
  • Rising sea levels can damage wall protections as well as increase the risk of coastal storms.
  • Poorer regions will be more affected by the water shortages.
  • Global Water shortage should be a concern of everyone’s not just the region or area affected by it.
  • Climate change will increase the rate that glaciers melt off when regions depend on the glacier water as a resource at the same time that other regions, already distressed by drought, will become more distressed by increase drought.
  • As water shortage becomes more of an issue, regions will use it as an economic source and will build dams to keep it from running off to lower land regions. They will focus on keeping as much water as they can, close to home. This will cause conflict and risk of terrorist attacks.
  • “More than 15 countries rely on hydropower to generate at least 80 percent of their electricity” (p. 86) and if water shortage is not handled properly, regions could be faced with energy shortage in addition to, food supply being affected and run a higher risk of waterborne diseases.
  • Professor Lall’s believe is that water shortage is blown out of proportion and isn’t really as bad as it is being made out to be.
  • Professor Lall believes that one way of fixing the crisis is to be more aware of what crops are being grown and where these crops are being grown, reducing waste, recycle water and repurpose flood-control systems, to name a few.
  • He also mentioned involving the government to ensure easy access to rural and urban areas as well as accessing cheap soil moisture sensors are used to improve agricultural water efficiency.
  • Professor Lall states that everyone should be paying more for water as another way to help regulate water usage.
  • Professor Lall states that “what the U.S. needs is a policy that incorporates forecasts, trading mechanisms, options, and coordinated use of both surface and ground-water resources.” (p.87)
  • Drought in Sahel will threaten 15 million lives.
  • Global Warming will affect global demand for fresh water versus the availability of the supply of fresh water.
  • Population growth also will affect the available supply of water.
  • Regions dealing with major water shortage will eventually run into issues with pollical and social instability.
  • The planet’s fresh water source is about 2.5%
  • Growing global water demand for fresh water are a result of increase in population, as it will continue to increase in the coming years, reduction in available fresh water due to the melting away of the glaciers as a result of global warming, individuals are consuming more meats over wheat, where it takes more water to feed the livestock than it does to grow wheat, and poor management of the water. Water shortage increases tension amongst regions and they begin to come territorial over their water source, leaving room for issues globally by building dams and things of the sort to keep from losing water to another region. Internationally there are only 263 water basins that are shared.
  • Managing the water source includes stopping the leaks from infrastructures, new irrigation systems and growing crops that use less water and can withstand drought, which would improve agriculture efficiency, pricing water based on its real value and making clear the rights to water sources.


*Answer all of the questions listed at the beginning of “Exploring the Issue” for each set of articles.


I believe that the increased demand for future water are 100% real. Both articles bring up many points as to why the demand will increase in the near future. Those include, increase in the population, climate change increases drought in some areas while melting the glaciers in other areas, increasing the risk of hurricanes from rising sea levels and once the glaciers meltdown, there will be no more water source in the future. Water is also underpriced and as mentioned in both articles as well. It was also mentioned that management of water source is a problem.


I believe that moderating the distribution of water would help the water shortage but I do not believe that it is the main culprit of global water shortage. I think it is more a combination of multiple culprits.


No, I do believe that global warming changes the result of adverse changes in the supply of and demand for water, I believe it has a huge impact on the supply of however. Global warming will soon dry up most if not all of our water resources.


I do not believe that just taking any one action will avert the world global water crisis. As I have stated in the above questions, I believe that it will take an all or nothing approach. There are many pieces to the puzzle and by focusing just on one piece, the others may get worse while you think you are working to solve the crisis.


I have more faith in focusing on a broader approach of a better integrated water management system for a brighter future global water system than anything else. I believe being broad and giving attention to all of the factors that are attributing to the water crisis is the only way to approach the situation.


  • Acknowledge differing viewpoints
    • This technique strengthens your argument in 3 ways:
      • It helps you spot flaws on the opposing side.
      • It can help you spot flaws in your own argument.
      • It establishes your credibility as someone who can address the issue in a reasonable way and at least consider opposing points of view
    • EXAMPLE: The installation of cameras does cost an immense amount of money. They also give no privacy to the students. (This writer is actually in FAVOR of security cameras. In the introduction, however, he raises these two arguments against the cameras to establish credibility.)
      • WARNING! If you acknowledge a differing viewpoint, don’t just say the other side has a valid point and leave it at that. Move on to the next step of rebuttal.
  • Rebut differing viewpoints
    • A strong argument points out the flaws in the other side’s thinking using reasonable language and examples.
    • INTRODUCTION EXAMPLE: The installation of the cameras does cost an immense amount of money. They also give no privacy to the students. However, they would be convenient for the school’s security.
    • CONCLUSION EXAMPLE: Even though the installation of cameras is expensive and offers no privacy to student, it does help the security of the school.

“Strategies for Writing an Effective Argument.” Strategies for Writing an Effective Argument. Triton College, n.d. Web. 12 May 2014. <http://academics.triton.edu/faculty/rwright/Documents/Writing/writing/writing6.html>.


by Brian W. Carver

After you have read the passage carefully, distinguishing between purported facts and opinions, answer the following questions thoroughly.

  1. What is the author’s conclusion?
  2. What premises does the author provide to support this conclusion?
  3. What assumptions (unstated premises) are required for the author’s argument to be valid?
  4. Do the premises seem uncontroversially true? If not, explain.
  5. Do the assumptions seem uncontroversially true? If not, explain.
  6. Are all terms in the argument adequately defined? If not, explain.
  7. Are there other facts, not discussed, that would be helpful to know in evaluating the argument? If so, explain.
  8. Does the author appeal to emotion or use words designed to influence our response? (e.g., discounts, hedges, assurances, repetition, etc.) If so, explain.
  9. Is your well-crafted version of the argument valid? That is, suppose the premises and assumptions are true, regardless of their actual truth or falsity. Ask yourself, given their truth, does the conclusion have to follow? (If so the argument is valid, if not, it is invalid.) If a clear valid/invalid answer is difficult, explain why.
  10. In your opinion, is your well-crafted version of the argument sound? That is, does it both have a valid form and have all true premises and assumptions? (If so, it is sound, if not, it is unsound.) Explain your answer.

Retrieved from https://www.ocf.berkeley.edu/~brianwc/courses/thinking/2002fall/analyze.html


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