There are problems in supplying water in MEDCs. These are:
Both water supply and the demand for water need to be managed.
In the UK there is a big issue with water supply. Areas which receive high amounts of rainfall tend to be sparsely populated.
One third of the UK population live in south-east England. This is also the driest area in the UK.
Ways to manage the water supply include:
In December 2010, over 40,000 people had water supply problems in Northern Ireland. One reason was because the water pipes were quite old - some over 60 years old. This meant that when there was a spell of very cold weather, many pipes could not cope and the pipelines failed.
The demand for domestic water can be monitored. Households with water meters in the UK use less water in general than those without. Households can also conserve water. Ways to do this are:
Industries can also look to recycle waste water. For example, when using water for cooling in steel-making, the water can be recycled again and again in the process.
In agriculture, drip-feed irrigation systems could be used rather than sprinkler systems.