Like water through our hands

I was really glad to read the article “Growing Green in Dry Times” by Margaret Williams [The Dirt, March 19]. As we enter the spring season, many of us have already forgotten the exceptional drought our region was experiencing just last summer, and many others have no idea our city still finds itself in a moderate drought—even after a rainy winter season. Thus, her article was a nice reminder of how each one of us can make a difference in our gardens in times of drought, with just a little ingenuity.

As the world’s climate continues to change, we are going to continue facing many threats to the region’s water supplies. Water is one of our most precious and valuable resources; without clean water, the world as we know it would perish.

The region’s water problems flow from our inability to balance human needs with the needs of the natural world. This malady is rooted in both a wasteful use of water and an antiquated mindset towards gathering and distributing it. As a result, a new approach to the way we plan, manage and use water is urgently needed.

The good news is that we are making progress. We have succeeded in [getting a] water-issues focus [on] our governor’s agenda. At the beginning of this month, Gov. Mike Easley unveiled a massive legislative proposal to help the state deal with the drought. The [recommendations] range from statewide mandatory restrictions to requiring low-flow faucets in new homes. Now [it] is up to [our] legislators to approve the governor’s proposal.

Despite these successes, more needs to be done—much more. The most important change [that] we can make is in the way we think about water, and Ms. William’s article reminds us we don’t have to use water so much to accomplish specific tasks [such] as gardening. New approaches abound.

There are a host of solutions to the pressing problems of water shortages if we only—like she says—“adjust our thinking and habits concerning water use.” Only by developing approaches that make sustainability and efficiency paramount can effective and permanent solutions to water problems be found.

Our state government seems to have begun acknowledging its function to ensure water conservation. Now it is time for each and every one of us to assume a responsible role with our water usage, [and] our gardens are definitely a good way to start!

— Sandra Liliana Brown

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