Ellen Brown Environment Original

A New Water Source That Could Make Drought a Thing of the Past

Oceans of water are beneath our feet, and new technologies are extracting it economically without ecological damage.
[Sam Cox / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]

By Ellen Brown / Original to ScheerPost

Lack of fresh water is now a global crisis. Water shortages mean food shortages, with hunger creating death tolls substantially exceeding those of the current Covid-19 crisis. According to the United Nations, some 800 million people are without clean water, and 40% of the world’s population is impacted by drought. By one measure, almost 100 percent of the Western United States is currently in drought, setting an all-time 122-year record. Meanwhile, local “water wars” rage, with states, cities and whole countries battling each other for scarce water resources. 

The ideal solution would be new water flows to add to the hydrologic cycle, and promising new scientific discoveries and technologies are holding out that possibility. But mainstream geologists have long contended that water is a fixed, non-renewable resource —and vested interests are happy to profit from that limiting proposition. Declaring water “the new oil,” an investor class of “Water Barons” —including wealthy billionaire tycoons, megabanks, mega-funds and investment powerhouses — has cornered the market by buying up water rights and water infrastructure everywhere. As Jo-Shing Yang, author of “Solving Global Water Crises,” wrote in a 2012 article titled “The New ‘Water Barons’: Wall Street Mega-Banks are Buying up the World’s Water”:

Facing offers of millions of dollars in cash from Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, UBS, and other elite banks for their utilities and other infrastructure and municipal services, cities and states will find it extremely difficult to refuse these privatization offers.

For developing countries, the World Bank has in some cases made water privatization a condition of getting a loan

Competing Theories

Geologists say that all of the water on Earth, including the atmosphere, oceans, surface water and groundwater, participates in the natural system called the “hydrologic cycle,” a closed circuit in which water moves from the surface to the atmosphere and back again. Rainwater falls, becoming groundwater which collects in aquifers (underground layers of porous rock or sand), emerging as rivers and lakes, and evaporating into clouds to again become rain. New water called “juvenile water” may be added through volcanic activities, but this addition is considered to be negligible. 

The most widely held theory is that water arrived on the planet from comets or asteroids, since any water on Earth when it was first formed would have evaporated in the intense heat of its early atmosphere. One problem with that theory is that comet water is different from Earth water. It has a higher ratio of deuterium (“heavy water” with an extra neutron in it). Asteroids, too, are not a good fit for Earth’s water. 

A more likely theory gaining new attention is that Earth’s water comes largely from within. Minerals containing hydrogen and oxygen outgas water vapor (H2O) under intense pressure and heat from the lower mantle (the layer between Earth’s thin crust and its hot core). Water emerges as steam and seeps outward under the centrifugal force of the spinning earth toward the crust, where it cools and seeps up through the fractured rock formations of the crust and the upper mantle. 

Studies over the past two decades have found evidence of several oceans’ worth of water locked up in rock as far down as 1,000 kilometers, challenging the assumption that water arrived from space after  Earth’s formation. A study reported in January 2017 based on isotopes from meteorites and the mantle found that water is unlikely to have arrived on icy comets after Earth formed.

Another study, reported in New Scientist the same month, showed that Earth’s huge store of water may have originated via chemical reactions in the mantle rather than coming from space. The researchers ran a computer simulation of reactions between liquid hydrogen and quartz in Earth’s upper mantle. The simulation showed that water forms within quartz but then cannot escape, so the pressure builds up – to such high levels that it could induce deep earthquakes. Rather than hydrogen bonding into the quartz crystal structure, as the researchers expected, it was found to disrupt the structure by bonding with oxygen. When the rock melts under intense heat, the water is released, forming water-rich regions below Earth’s surface. The researchers said that water formed in the mantle could reach the surface in various ways — for example via magma in the form of volcanic activity — and that water could still be being created deep inside the Earth today. If so, that means water is a renewable resource. 

New Technological Solutions

The challenge is drawing this deep water to the surface, but there are many verified cases of mountaintop wells that have gushed water for decades in arid lands. This water, which could not have come from the rainwater of the conventional hydrologic cycle, is variously called “deep-seated,” “juvenile” or “primary” water. It is now being located and tapped by enterprising hydrogeologists using technological innovations like those used in other extractive industries – but without their destructive impact on the environment. 

According to Mark Burr, CEO of Primary Water Technologies,  these innovations include mapping techniques using GIS layering and 3-D modeling, satellite imagery and other sophisticated geophysical data collection; radiometrics, passive seismics, advanced resistivity and even quantum physics. A video capturing one of his successful drills at Chekshani Cliffs, Utah, and the innovative techniques used to pinpoint where to drill, can be seen here

Burr comments that locating “primary water” does not require drilling down thousands of feet. He says that globally, thousands of primary water wells have been successfully drilled; and for most of them, flowing water was tapped at less than 400 feet. It is forced up from below through fissures in the Earth. What is new are the innovative technologies now being used to pinpoint where those fissures are.  

The developments, he says, mirror those in the U.S. oil and gas industry, which went from cries of “Peak Oil” deficiency to an oil and gas glut in less than a decade. Dominated for 40 years by a foreign OPEC cartel, the oil industry was disrupted through a combination of scientific advancements (including recognition of abiotic oil and gas formations), technological innovation, and regulatory modernization. The same transformation is under way in water exploration and production.

Water Pioneers

These developments were pioneered in the U.S. by Burr’s mentors, led by Bavarian-born mining engineer and geologist Stephen Riess of San Diego. Riess drilled over 800 wells around the world before his death in 1985 and was featured in several books, including “New Water for a Thirsty World” (1960) by Dr. Michael Salzman, professor of economics at the University of Southern California. 

Partnering with Riess until his death was Hungarian-born hydrogeologist Pal Pauer, founder of the Primary Water Institute based in Ojai, California. Pauer has also successfully located and drilled over 1,000 primary water wells worldwide, including over 500 in East Africa. One noteworthy well was drilled high on the top of a mountain in Kenya at Ngu-Nyumu, captured in a short video here. The workers drilled through rock and hit water at 300 feet, pumping at 15-30 gallons per minute. The flow, which is now being captured in a water tank, is still serving hundreds of villagers who were previously hauling water from heavily infested streams in jugs balanced on their heads. 

Another remarkable mountaintop project overseen by Pauer involved two wells drilled at a 6,000 foot elevation in the Tehachapi Mountains in California. The drill first hit water at 35 feet. The 7-inch diameter borehole proceeded to eject water at a rate estimated to be over 800 gallons per minute. The event is captured on YouTube here

Like California, Australia is an arid land with chronic water problems. An Australian company called Sustainable Water Solutions (SWS), a partner of Burr’s Primary Water Technologies, was featured on a local TV news program here. A video of one of SWS’s successful case studies detailing its methodologies is here.

A rival company is Australian-based AquaterreX Deep Seated Water Technology. According to its website, AquaterreX is an international enterprise employing  geology, environmental and earth sciences with a range of proprietary methodologies to identify and analyze geologic, hydrologic, atmospheric, and other data to locate reliable sources of Deep Seated Water with nearly 100% accuracy. Some of the company’s results are shown in a video which describes “deep-seated water” as being stored in a deeper layer of aquifers below those of the conventional hydrologic cycle. 

Fresh Water Is Ubiquitous and Renewable

What these researchers call “primary water” or “deep seated water” is classified by the National Ground Water Association (NGWA) simply as a form of “groundwater,” since it is in the ground. But whatever it is called, these newly tapped flows have not been part of the hydrologic cycle for at least the last century. This is shown on testing by the lack of the environmental contaminants found in the hydrologic water cycle. From the time when atomic testing began in the Pacific, hydrologic water has contained traces of tritium, a radioactive isotope of hydrogen used as a fuel in thermonuclear bombs. Primary water shoots up tritium-free —clean, fresh and usually drinkable without filtration. 

The latest NGWA fact sheet explicitly confirms that water is a renewable resource. It states: 

  • About 90 percent of our freshwater supplies lie underground, but less than 27 percent of the water Americans use comes from underground sources, which illustrates the under-utilization of groundwater.
  • Groundwater is a significant water supply source — the amount of groundwater storage dwarfs our present surface water supply.
  • Hydrologists estimate, according to the National Geographic Society, U.S. groundwater reserves to be at least 33,000 trillion gallons — equal to the amount discharged into the Gulf of Mexico by the Mississippi River in the past 200 years.
  • At any given moment, groundwater is 20 to 30 times greater than the amount in all the lakes, streams, and rivers of the United States….
  • Groundwater is a renewable resource. [Emphasis added.]

Based on the NGWA’s figures, AquaterreX CEO James D’Arezzo, writing in July 2021, estimates that the Earth has enough water to supply consumption needs for 6,000 years at today’s rates of use.

Maximizing Public Funds While Avoiding Territorial Disputes

If primary water is ubiquitous and the techniques for locating it are available, why aren’t policymakers pursuing that alternative already? Burr says one major problem lies in regulation. Because all groundwater has been considered a derivative of rainfall, public policy has generally focused on restricting water usage or moving massive amounts of water from wet areas to dry areas, without considering deep drilling as an alternative. Water is considered a limited, non-renewable resource, so new wells are thought to infringe on the water rights of neighboring properties. But “primary water” can be tapped without causing subsidence  (the gradual caving or sinking of nearby land), showing that it is independent of the existing hydrologic cycle. 

In some states, such as Texas,  property owners have the right to capture the water beneath their property  (called the “Rule of Capture”), but this is not true in other states. California, for example, has a complicated system of regulation requiring costly and laborious permits. Granting property owners the right to drill wells on their own property, particularly where the water has been tested and shown to be “deep” or “primary water,” could be a major step toward turning water scarcity into abundance.

According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, the U.S. needs over $500 billion in infrastructure investment just for drinking water, wastewater, stormwater and dams. But legislators at both federal and state levels have been slow to respond, chiefly due to budget constraints. One proposal is a National Infrastructure Bank (HR 3339) constructed on the model of Franklin Roosevelt’s Reconstruction Finance Corporation (discussed in my earlier article here). When allocating funds for water usage, however, policymakers would do well to consider investing in “primary water” wells. 

Tapping into local deep water sources not only can help ease pressures on debt-strapped public treasuries but can bypass the Water Barons and relieve territorial tensions over water rights. Water sovereignty is a critical prerequisite to food sovereignty and to national and regional independence. As noted in a recent Water Today article, quoting James D’Arezzo:

“The fact is, we do not have to severely restrict water usage, if we leverage all the tools at our disposal. There is plenty of water available on the planet and we now know how to find it. We also have newer best practices that can make a dramatic difference in total usage…. If we start acting now, in a short time the headlines about ‘water restrictions’ and grotesque pictures of dead animals and starving children can be replaced with headlines about more food production, smarter use of water and less conflict.”

___________________

Ellen Brown
Ellen Brown

Ellen Brown is a regular contributor to ScheerPost. She is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of thirteen books including the best-selling Web of Debt. Her latest book is Banking on the People: Democratizing Money in the Digital Age and her 400+ blog articles are at EllenBrown.com.

39 comments

  1. Drill for water. Oglala Aquifer, one obvious example.

    The proposal to drill or mine for water ignores the obvious. No matter the science.

    As if, water is a singular or isolate concern. Clean aka potable water is befouled as part & parcel of industry or simply the ‘washing away’ of contaminants aka pollution.

    The institutions and the systemic architectures of the present – one might even tilt towards ‘the green’ which is another form of wizardy – are basely the problem. Conjure up infinite amounts of water, akin to infinite amounts of oil, infinite amounts of any & all precious substance(s). That is not a solution.

    You can begin with overpopulation. Consumerism. Inequality of wealth. Economies based on war & profiteering from such. Bad governing structures aka corrupt. Globalization. On an on and on. W A T E R. There isn’t a shortage – there is a misuse of a resource and simply too many goddamn people. The solution (as if here is one) is sustainability and balance. Good luck with that.

  2. Thank you Ellen Brown, for your gift. An exquisite treatise, and a call to humanity for humility and action.
    The Creator has shown light on the “door”. Lesson to all: Choose the method, wisely.

  3. Here is an option that many may not be familiar with – using the sunlight and air to make renewable drinking water: https://www.source.co/

    Let’s be smart about what we are doing to & for people and planet for a change!

  4. Fascinating. Thanks for bringing this to my attention; this should be more widely known.

  5. Funny Story? In 2006 a 25 year old Jenna Bush was a victim of theft despite being accompanied by Secret Service. She was in Buenas Aires bar hopping ala Jenna, when her purse was stolen so it made news. She was there at the behest of her family to seal up a deal to acquire 300,000 acres in Paraquay, larger than all five boroughs of NYC. That land just happens to be over the Guarani Aquifer, the largest known reservoir of fresh water on the planet. Even the business press at the time did not understand the significance of the purchase. They speculated it was because the land was close to Bolivian gas fields.
    If what Ellen presents is true, I would expect that the billionaire class will already have employed this technology to survey the entire planet and quietly begin buying up probable sources. Billionaire capitalism requires sequestering all necessary resources. Then they make them scarce and increase the price. It has happened many times. Ellen is an expert on how they have made money scarce to make necessary resources cheap for their accrual at cheap prices. This scenario has already played out in several places like Cochabamba, Bolivia. The peoples revolt against the heist of their water system led to the election of Evo Morales. The coup against him led to the privatization of Bolivia’s lithium deposits. Elon Musk when asked about that said; “We can coup anywhere.” And so it goes.
    Thank you Ellen for once again helping us to understand some significant but hidden information. Free speech is necessary for freedom.

    1. like the story–not told enough. Jena was in paraguay capaital Asncion? by meme.Paraguay in my taxi in Meanol’ dirty Frisco. they laughed too. cryig out simulataneoulsly, “We stole her purse!”
      free ride for them!
      it was for the water not oil. this was the future water supply for Sao Paulo,, brazil’s largest city. and it is something for Lula to watchout for. If Bush is still alive and not feeling very altruistic, he might just start pumping the water under his land all over Paraguay or down the Rio Plata just to mess with Lula’s rendition of social welfare.
      CA lost it’s own aquifer under the San Joaquin Valley. already. pffft….gone in. lieu of avocados and almonds and fracking. the best water in Socal is in the LA forest owned by Nestle. and Not far from Flint Michigan where they drink lead, lies another Nestle nest of aquifer owned and used for bottled water…always in plastic bottles BTW.

  6. The oil companies must have records of water encountered drilling billions of oil wells. They would have
    no reason not to share their data with an interested party. The Colorado River s dry and all the pipeline contractors are laying oil pipes. Why not lower the level of the Great Lakes 5 feet with a few water pipelines and pumping stations. The high water level is causing a trillion dollars in damage and insurance companies would be wise to pay for the project but insurance companies are as dumb as a rock.

    1. Lakes are not rising. they are shrinking. the ocean is supposed to be rising soon as landed ice melts.
      i’m from Chicago and don’t want Lake Michigan changed in anyway.
      big changes cause big snafus.

    2. Why not engineer a “swish” system in the Great Lakes, and dynamically move the water via sea level appurtenances. By “connecting” the lakes, the natural flow could be managed by gravitational means, and could be controlled via damming.

  7. Hello Ellen, . . . interesting subject, quite different than finance , economics, banking & currencies. Please share the professional source of reference or collaborating P.E. / Scientist that are associated with you on this. Thank you.

    W. Melder

    1. Hi Webb, I named them in the article! Chiefly Pal Pauer and Mark Burr. I’ve written articles on this subject before. I thought about writing a book on it, it seemed so promising, but I got too busy with public banking. Maybe later!

  8. Very interesting, Ellen.

    So, it turns out that the planet’s water is largely created from its rocks. I think the planet is 20+% oxygen which is largely trapped in silicate rocks. Water being less dense than “rock” will naturally move to the surface over time. As soon one throws out the “derived from comets” theory, it becomes sort of obvious. Hmmm.

    There are obvious consequences for extracting this water (subsidence etc.) but this reaction can be managed by our well educated geologists. Its a risk calculation; how much water is there, how much is it needed, what future subsidence events are likely and how widespread would they be? It all sounds very manageable, which is to say good.

    Thank you for this most thought provoking article.

      1. Somehow I missed the article linked from BPI. CA uses 20% of its electricity pumping water. Another win would be to shade the vast open canals with solar panels. Make electricity and reduce evaporation. It is being done other places . I think it was considered in 2014 or thereabouts. CA could subsidize the manufacture of silicon to boost market share being lost to China. Another win. Solar panels, computer chips, electricity and water saving. That’s 4 wins that should make up for the carbon footprint and pay to make chip manufacture clean and carbon neutral. Or wait and let China have all the chip and panel market.

  9. Hi Ellen; This is Will Sandstrom. Yours is a great article. I am glad you came to Madison, WI years ago so that I got to know a great person who writes great articles. { write on an event in my life. I write on how cruel David Rockefeller was in 1950s towards species living in and around the world’s largest fresh water lake, Lake Superior. He had northern MN iron bearing rock ground to separate and concentrate higher iton bearing rock from lower bearing rock (called tailings)-and had tailings dumped to bottom of wLake Superior. This ruined the spawning beds of Lake Trout and smelt The higher bearing rocks (called pellets) were shipped in ore boats to eastern steel mils. Lake Superior is now the world’s largest dead lake. Surely there is plenty of wealth and ingenuity to suck up the top layer of tailing and leave the lower spawning beds. The tailings could be used, to build a good ski mountain.

  10. Advocating the use of very slow to accumulate underground water is another short term solution with negative long term consequences.
    Aquifers replenished by the hydrological cycle are being drained ever faster than they are replenished, continued use will result in their ceasing to exist, the wells become deeper and deeper, the energy costs rising until the wells hit a water impervious bedrock and it’s game over.
    Extracting the fossil water available from non-aquifer sources face the same problem, once they are gone they are gone and will require geological ages to replenish, generated one water molecule at a time from a very slow geological/thermal/chemical process.
    Unfortunately we can take no succour from these crassly short sighted proposals.

    1. Agreed on drawing water from the accessible hydrologic cycle, but this is water that has not been in that cycle before. It’s newly tapped water, as shown on analysis by its lack of contaminants. And as the studies I cited showed, there is a scientific mechanism by which these “deep aquifers” (as the Australian group calls them) can be and evidently are being replenished. Intense pressure from below heats up water-containing granite, causing it to split and release steam, which cools to a liquid as it is forced through fissures in the earth by underground volcanic reactions. Once it gets into the upper hydrologic cycle, it doesn’t disappear; it cycles round and round with the water we use now.

  11. Meteros of ice, some a large as mountains continue to enter our atmosphere and vaporize. This was discovered when scientists found inexplicably holes in the ionosphere. As for water gushing up and shooting out due to earth centrifugal force, perhaps Ellen can contemplate that a bit more deeply….

  12. “Declaring water “the new oil,” an investor class of “Water Barons” —including wealthy billionaire tycoons, megabanks, mega-funds and investment powerhouses — has cornered the market by buying up water rights and water infrastructure everywhere.

    Think about the above.
    And then this,
    Water is as basic as air for man’s survival.

    As for the “Water Barons” attempts to monopolize on it.
    And yes,
    It may today be legal but is clearly unforgivingly unethically immoral.

    Greed will yet prove to be man’s downfall.
    This is but one egregious example.

  13. Just how deep do you want me to drill? My two wells at about 120′ do not agree with this story. The lack of *accessible* water is a serious concern that multiple years of drought exacerbate. How am I supposed to afford the specialized equipment needed to drill a 300′ well?

  14. From my associate:

    I’ve only looked at it a little, but I think claims that primary water is “A New Water Source That Could Make Drought a Thing of the Past” are wrong.  

    This is my reasoning: 

    A.) If “primary water” is ancient deposits of groundwater separated from the general water cycle, isn’t that the same as fossil water?  In that case, some deposits could be tapped as a small part of an overall solution. But that would only provide temporary alleviation, since those deposits would be drawn down and not replenished. This is not a real solution for making “drought a thing of the past.” 

    B.) If “primary water” is the product of some unknown geological process, then my first question is: what is the rate of production of primary water via that process?  Is it comparable to matching mankind’s needs or not? 

    B.a.) I don’t see how the rate of deep geological production of primary water could be anywhere near the scale needed to match mankind’s requirements.  For example, in the western US, three additional Colorado Rivers worth of water is a conservative estimate for the needs (in my opinion).  Say, for argument, primary water is being created at that rate (three Colorado Rivers) across (beneath) the entire area of the United States.  That rate of primary water creation would generate a water deposit the size of Lake Superior every 500 years.  Within one million years, there would be primary water deposits equivalent to 19 Lake Superiors stacked on top of each other, beneath the entire area of the United States. But, a million years isn’t that long in geological times.  

    The Earth has been around for 4.5 billion years.  If this was the average rate of primary water production globally (three Colorado Rivers per USA land area), then a volume of water equal to the size of the Earth would be generated in 3.1 billion years. So, if primary water is being generated by some unknown geological process at a rate anywhere near the needs of mankind, then the entirety of the volume of the Earth would have been converted into water by now (unless this geological process just started recently, in geological time, for some mysterious reason). 

    Bottom line, even if primary water is being created by some unknown geological process, I don’t see how it could be happening at a rate sufficient for mankind’s needs. 

    B.b.) If the rate of deep geological production of primary water is significantly slower than what would be required to match the needs of mankind, then it would be a resource that we’d deplete much faster than it is replenished (similar to much of the existing use of groundwater globally), meaning, essentially, the same scenario as A.) above. 

    Conclusion: Based on this reasoning, I strongly disagree with claims like primary water being “A New Water Source That Could Make Drought a Thing of the Past.”  Perhaps it could be part of an overall solution, possibly, but it would be a small part–basically additional groundwater deposits to be drawn down. Pulling out ground water at rates needed to alleviate water needs globally (if enough water was there) would start to have noticeable effects on lowering the elevation of the land, and would probably raise sea levels. 

    Why do that when the existing water cycle already provides more than we need?  With the appropriate infrastructure, we can manage the existing cycle to satisfy all our needs, and that is truly renewable, since it is an ongoing cycle. 

  15. Ellen, you blow me away. Even some things that I work on a lot, like water, I’ve never heard of this deep-seated water and it’s very encouraging. Thank you.

  16. Privatization of water availability is evil.
    Maybe another French Revolution is overdue.
    Thank you for the excellent article.

  17. Interesting article but as another commenter noted, the impression given is that the essential resource (water) is effectively endless; all that is required is the proper use of technology and policy. So… no worries, the planet can support 14 billion people except only for another 3000 years. What nonsense.

  18. Oh. Ellen. She buys fake scientism. Then some water expert ends her piece with, sure, we can have the same water usage now with this miracle of drilling virgin water. Wow. How much energy to move sewage and treat it? All those blood ponds of the meat and poultry industries. All the poisons from industrial ag. This is putting the capitalist and transnational banking profiteers’ cart before the dead horse of water for all the rotten industries that waste it for junk and poisons. Amazing, Ellen now the believer of good capitalism in the service of restorative ecology and the rights of the poor and indigenous. This water barons and these water geologists again in the service of profits for tge elites and their Eichmanns and stockholders. A fine mess to keep the predatory capitalists fat

    1. What’s your solution, genocide? Of course we need to manage the water in the hydrologic cycle prudently. I’m just suggesting a new water source of the sort Gaddafi found in the deserts of Libya with his Great Manmade River Project, using techniques he was planning to share with all of drought-stricken Africa. He was also attempting to set up a pan-African Union with its own gold-backed currency, obviously a non-starter for the international banking cartel, so all that came to a screeching halt. https://ellenbrown.com/2016/03/13/exposing-the-libyan-agenda-a-closer-look-at-hillarys-emails/

  19. If I was primary water I would find a safe place to hide. It’s like, never mind about draining lakes and aquifers , making a sewer out of the oceans and channeling the remaining surface waters to metropolitan monstrosities like L.A., we’ll just find more water and do to it what was already done in the name of capitalism.

    This expanding economy crap has got to go before we do.

  20. Water scarcity for the general public is created by our seniority rights-based allocation system. Let’s change how we allocate, regulate and distribute water before exploiting “new” sources of groundwater.

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  22. water floats our boat
    water is very heavy & doesn’t compress well
    serious subsidence issues arise when water is extracted, it is part of the structural integrity of the geologic formation

  23. This is very very interesting, but also scary. Not just in the way that a capitalist class is trying to control the world’s supply of fresh water, but also that there are some glaring gaps in our knowledge. We know that there can be life that has evolved differently in the deep ocean’s vents. We know that there’s vast amounts of water deep in the earth. Therefore, we could potentially disrupt ecosystems that we haven’t even imagined, and systems that are way beyond our understanding.

    I’m thinking of all the stories from Indigenous people about humans emerging from caves deep inside the earth. I realize this is against the grain of our materialist paradigm, but there is just so much we don’t know, and it feels way more feasible to work on changing how we live.

  24. There are some obvious scientific flaws in this article. Number 1. Yes it is true. That the current theory about asteroids, delivering water to earth is in doubt. Yet substatial evidence may suggest that all planets had the same amount. Number 2. Tritium and Deuterium is NOT and I repeat NOT used in thermonuclear warheads. Primer/fission component is Americium (Go figure). Fusion part is Lithium isotopes. Yours Truly -Frederik…

  25. How do we add massive quantities of new water, primary water from the Earth’s upper mantle without worsening the increasingly destructive hydrological cycle of the Anthropocene? Would it have a discernible effect on sea level rise, storm surge and coastal erosion? What about ocean salinity and the impact of even more freshwater on oceanic currents? The Atlantic Conveyor is already in peril.
    A warmer, more humid atmosphere is a giant problem. It fuels severe weather events – hurricanes, tornadoes, atmospheric rivers – that are already savaging countries in every corner of the world.

    The primary water crowd are trying to solve a problem we don’t really have while doing very little to solve the problem we do have.

    We don’t have a shortage of water. There’s plenty of water. It’s just not where we need it thanks to climate change. It arrives in destructive torrents in some places (recently Britain, Germany, America’s Gulf Coast and eastern seaboard, China, Turkey, etc.) and doesn’t show up at all in others. Ours is a problem of balance or the loss of it.

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  27. There is no shortage of water. Our problem isn’t a scarcity of water in the hydrologic cycle, it’s where that water has gone.

    The water we imagine is missing is in our rising oceans and in our warmer, wetter atmosphere. Adding primary water from the upper mantle adds the the total volume in the hydrological cycle. It’s a bit like adding once safely sequestered fossil carbon to the surface carbon cycle. That hasn’t worked out all that well for us, has it.

    Water vapor is supposedly the most powerful greenhouse gas. We need less of the gaseous form of water up in the atmosphere and more of it in liquid form on the surface.

    It’s said that global warming has increased atmospheric water vapor by around 14 per cent. This hotter, wetter atmosphere fuels severe storm events of increasing frequency, intensity and duration. Adding to the volume of water in the hydrological cycle can’t help anyone, not for long.

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