We need to keep our water clean; water pollution is a problem all around the world, including in Canada, where the levels of clean water and sea animal life have been decreasing year after year. If we do not stop polluting the world’s water, we might not survive into the next century.

British poet W.H Auden once noted, “Thousands have lived without love, not one without water.”

British poet W.H Auden once noted, “Thousands have lived without love, not one without water.” Water is one of the most important things in this world since our body needs clean water to survive. If we did not have clean water, we would die. Many people have tried to see how long you can last without clean water, and it turns out, not long. According to Medical News Today, the amount of time a human can last without having water is three days. Perhaps people need to learn to love nature and how it provides for us more than it profits for us.

Water pollution doesn’t just affect humans, it affects all life in the water. That ranges from turtles and fish to sharks and whales. For example, plastic gets stuck in fish’s gills and fins and makes it so they can’t breathe. Plastic also destroys habitats, which can wipe out entire species. We need to realize that we will destroy all life when we continue to treat water as a dumping ground for our garbage.

As we know right now Earth is the only planet with life on it, the only place with water. If we mess up and pollute the world more, we do not have a backup plan or another way to live. There are ways that we can make changes to stop water pollution, some are: not pouring fat and grease down drains, eating more organic food, cutting down meat consumption, avoiding anything plastic, and planting more trees. By doing some of these actions, we can get more oxygen from planting trees, prevent plastic water bottles and plastic bags from getting into our freshwater.

We we think of water issues, we think of far off places, not beautiful British Columbia with its rivers, lakes and ocean. But British Columbia, its government, its industry and its people all contribute to the problem. BC has massive open-pit coal mines which are polluting waters, damaging the fish population, and contaminating drinking water.

As well, there are many place in Canada where officials report that the drinking tap water is not safe. Many of these places are in Indigenous communities. A recent example is the water crisis in Iqaluit, in Nunavut Territory where possible evidence of gasoline was found in the tap water. The Nunavut government is expecting tests to come back next week, until then, the government warned that newborns and infants should not be bathed in tap water. The city’s investigation into its main drinking water source began last week after residents complained their tap water had a gasoline-like smell. Officials announced there was observed evidence of possible hydrocarbon contamination at the water treatment plant. Some say the breach of gas into the water supply is a result of climate change.

Big corporations, the products they sell and the people who buy them also are responsible for water pollution. Nestle, Tim Hortons, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, and McDonald’s are the top five companies whose branded items are found in our waters. Greenpeace ranked 10 of the most common items found. Food wrappers were at the top of the list while containers were at the bottom. Some companies taking steps to make changes to their waste in the water by 2025. But will it be too late?

Water pollution is a huge problem right now and we need to take a stand and fix this problem. If we do not fix this issue, we could see complete fresh, clean water shortages by 2050 in British Columbia. It is small things that people can do to make a change, it’s just a matter of people doing it. Will you be that person?