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Weather Our World With Water

 

Author: Freddy Lee, Chief Technology Officer, IBM Malaysia

The Weather Channel and IBM Watson combine the world’s most accurate weather data with industry-leading AI, IoT and analytics technologies. By delivering personalised actionable insights to consumers and businesses across the globe, the solutions help them make smarter decisions to improve safety, reduce costs and drive revenue.

On 5th June 2019, The Weather Channel changed its brand to The Water Channel in conjunction with World Environment Day. The year-long Water Channel campaign will feature Forecast: Change, an awareness initiative in support of clean water for all.

The scarcity of fresh water has become a significant risk to the human race. Today, freshwater scarcity affects 2 billion people globally, causing food, energy and security issues, impacting the health of our environment and the global economy. By 2025, two-thirds of the world’s population could be living in water-stressed areas.

By 2025, two-thirds of the world’s population could be living in water-stressed areas

Over the decades, global warming has led to an increase in extreme weather conditions such as severe storms, floods and droughts.  This not only leads to more natural disasters that require massive relief efforts in affected areas, but also reduces our planet’s capacity to sustainably provide clean water.

Malaysia was quite fortunate in the past to “escape” major catastrophes such as hurricanes, typhoons and earthquakes. While we reside outside the Pacific Ring of Fire and away from the dangers posed by natural disasters, even that “trend” is changing.

For example, the 30-second earthquake that struck Sabah in 2015 jolted Malaysians on the fragility of life. And the 2014/2015 floods that ravaged 11 out the 13 states in Malaysia displaced over 200,000 people and took 24 lives.

More recently, Malaysians have been asked to brace for water rationing for the next three months due to the heatwave. The water levels at three dams in the country are hovering at around 50% of their total storage capacity. The Forecast: Change initiative is a timely reminder of how we can reduce our personal water footprint.

A simple way we can contribute is to study everything we use, wear, buy, sell and eat that takes water to produce. For instance, a new pair of jeans takes 1,800 gallons of fresh water to make. That’s enough to provide a family of four with clean water for months.

Go to thewaterchannel.org to find out how you can make an impact on the world’s water health and change the forecast for the better.

IBM is also doing its bit. From 5th June 2019 to 4th June 2020, IBM will contribute a total market value of US$1 million to charity: water and The Nature Conservancy to help provide clean water to those in need. Help me unlock 100 million gallons worth of water today.

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