Page 5 - Water Sustainability 
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                                                  UNIT 1     Why WATer MATTers

                                            Governments can work to positively impact water use to pro-
                                            mote sustainability on a global scale. Recognizing your own

                                            relationship with water can help you make choices to positively
                                            impact water use on a personal level.

                                            Access to fresh drinking water is vital to sustainability.

                                            1.2   History, Civilization, and Water

                                            Water has been central to humanity long before people orga-
                                            nized themselves into towns and cities. A widespread creation
                                            story that recounts the origin of life and of people from water
                                            is supported by modern scientific understanding of the begin-

                                            nings of life on Earth. Prehistoric humans relied on freshwater
                                            and saltwater resources to provide drinking water and food.
                                            They often survived by hunting migratory animals that fol-
                                            lowed seasonal water resources across the landscape.

                                            The first large-scale permanent settlements grew around

                                            important rivers: Mesopotamia around the Tigris and
                                            Euphrates rivers, Egypt around the Nile, China around the
                                            Yellow River, and India around the Indus River.

                                            These rivers flooded their banks seasonally, providing life-
                                            giving water and nutrients to the surrounding floodplain.

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