More than 30 million people – a tenth of the US population – depend on the Colorado River for food, water, recreation, energy and work. But all that demand has taken its toll; the mighty river that once carved the Grand Canyon no longer reaches the Pacific; in fact most of its last 90 miles are dry. A new campaign called Change the Course, produced by Participant Media, National Geographic and BEF, is recruiting all Americans to help save the Colorado, and other freshwater ecosystems, by taking a pledge to conserve water.
Why pledge to help the Colorado even if you’re not one of those 30 million people? Chances are good those winter fruits and vegetables you’ve enjoyed the past few months were grown in California’s Imperial Valley, which was a desert until it was transformed into prime farmland thanks entirely to water diverted from the Colorado River.
And anyway, the campaign isn’t limited to just helping the Colorado. Each online pledge will restore 1,000 gallons to the Colorado River Basin thanks to corporate sponsors who will pay for on-the-ground projects. But with your pledge to shrink your water footprint (Calculate yours with our Water Footprint Calculator!) at home and by being more conscious of what you eat and buy, you’ll be saving freshwater from rivers and groundwater around the world.
The US water footprint is twice the global average, so take this opportunity to both shrink yours and help restore the mighty Colorado!