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Maude Barlow Comes to Perth

Maude Barlow's "Blue Covenant"

The only element more crucial than air to our survival is water.

In her most recent book, Blue Covenant, Maude Barlow paints a chilling portrait of our world only twenty years from now—a world where huge new deserts are created by pipelines moving water; where no progress has been made to stop industry from polluting water sources; where the poor could die in increasing numbers because of a simple lack of clean water.

This is the world Barlow is working so hard to prevent. A world that all of us can prevent.

Consider these facts from Blue Covenant:
The average human being needs 50 litres of water a day for drinking, cooking and sanitation. The average North American uses 600 litres a day. The average African uses 6 litres a day.

Seven hundred million people in China, out of a total of 1.3 billion, drink water that doesn’t meet the minimum health standards set by the World Health Organization.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, more than 130 million people don’t have safe drinking water.

Because of massive pollution, sewage water is being used to fertilize crops. The International Water Management Institute found that one-tenth of all crops were fertilized with sewage, most of it completely untreated.

From the Himalayas to Canada, melting glaciers are leading to severe water shortages.

Maude Barlow---lifelong social reformer and political activist, passionate environmentalist, head of the Council of Canadians (, and, most recently, Canada’s most vociferous and dedicated water advocate. Her fight for social justice covers important issues on many different fronts: issues like globalization, medicare, the free trade agreement, and Love Canal.

Her 2002 book, Blue Gold, tackled the battle over who would get access to the world’s dwindling fresh water supplies: on the one side, transnational corporate interests and most of the first world’s governments, who want water to be a commodity under private control. On the other side, a large global water justice movement, made up of ordinary citizens all over the world fighting to control their own private water sources, who view water as a common heritage for all people and a public trust. This group has become a formidable political force globally, with Maude Barlow one of its prominent spokespeople.