71% of the Earth's surface is covered with water. On Earth, it is found mostly in oceans and other large water bodies, Saltwater oceans hold 97% of surface water, glaciers and polar ice caps 2.4%, and other land surface water such as rivers, lakes and ponds 0.6%.
Clean, fresh drinking water is essential to human and other life. Some observers have estimated that by 2025 more than half of the world population will be facing water-based vulnerability, a situation which has been called a water crisis by the United Nations. Water plays an important role in the world economy, as it functions as a solvent for a wide variety of chemical substances and facilitates industrial cooling and transportation. Approximately 70 percent of freshwater is consumed by agriculture.
So, how does Singapore manage her water needs?
The Singapore Water Story
Back in the 1960s, Singapore faced immense challenges in water management, such as drought, floods and water pollution coupled with the lack of natural aquifers and land to collect water. These challenges have inspired Singapore to innovate and develop capabilities in water management, turning our weakness into strength. Singapore’s experience in effectively addressing its water challenges has earned it international recognition as a model city for water management and an emerging global hydrohub.
Over the last 40 years, through strategic planning and investment in research and technology, PUB – Singapore’s National Water Agency has built a robust and diversified supply of water known as the ‘Four National Taps’. The water supply comprises (1) local catchment water, (2) imported water, (3) highly-purified reclaimed water known as NEWater, and (4) desalinated water.
To learn more about how Singapore manages it water resources and the Four National Taps, visit Marina Barrage’s Sustainable Singapore Gallery and the NEWater Visitor Centre.
Built across the mouth of the Marina Channel, the Marina Barrage creates Singapore’s 15th reservoir, and the first in the heart of the city. With a catchment area of 10,000 hectares, or one-sixth the size of Singapore, the Marina catchment is the island’s largest and most urbanised catchment, meeting 10% of Singapore’s water needs.
Situated at the heart of the up and coming Marina South district, this colossal architectural masterpiece is a must-visit. Take a stroll through the barrage’s vast compounds and come face to face with stunning engineering equipment. Or simply stand atop the green roof to take in the sweeping Singapore city skyline. Embark on an information and sensory extravaganza at the Sustainable Singapore Gallery and discover how the barrage ingeniously prevents flooding to the city’s low-lying areas as well as Singapore’s efforts towards environmental sustainability. Explore six galleries, each sharing a unique aspect of Singapore’s sustainable story. Uncover, through fun interactive and innovative multimedia, how a small country with limited resources meets the needs of a fast developing community in an environmentally-friendly manner.
For more information visit: http://www.pub.gov.sg/marina/Pages/default.aspx