Gallery B

Going Deep For A Drink
Page 2
Page 3

Massive Fresh Water Pools Discovered

By James Donahue

For those of us who have been concerned about the insane waste of the known fresh water supplies of the world for industrial and commercial use, there may be a solution for future generations.
It seems that large aquifers of fresh clean water have been discovered lying in pockets deep under the world’s oceans. 
There is so much water down there that researchers estimate it amounts to many times more than all of the water extracted from the known aquifers over the past 100 years.

The problem will be getting to this water and distributing it to the populated areas of the world. The other problem is that this water will not be renewable. Once it is used, it will not be naturally replaced. 

The discovery was recently published in the science journal Nature by Dr. Vincent Post and his team from the Natural Center for Groundwater Research and the Flinders University School of the Environment.

“Our research shows that fresh and brackish aquifers below the seabed are actually quite a common phenomenon,” Post wrote. “Many aquifers were – and are still – protected from seawater by layers of clay and sediment that sit on top of them.”

These hidden pools of fresh water appear to have formed on continental shelves near coastlines, which makes them more easily available for human use in the future. The newly discovered aquifers have been found off the coasts of Australia, China, North America and South Africa.

How did all that fresh water collect under the seas? Land based aquifers hold rain water that slowly filters its way through the ground and eventually collects in porous rock or caverns deep underground. The aquifers under the sea beds are believed to have been formed in the same way, but during a time millions of years ago, perhaps during an ice age when the sea levels were low and coastlines were extended farther out.
Now that we know these newly found aquifers exist, Post warns that great care must be given to protect them from industrial and agricultural contamination. Once the fresh water of the world is destroyed, life as we know it will not be possible.

The discovery, for example, was made by industrial drillers searching for oil. The aquifers they hit are already ruined.