A couple of months ago, Microsoft had made another eco-friendly announcement that it will become carbon negative too by 2030. And now with the new pledge of becoming water positive, Microsoft is surely working hard to address crucial environmental issues that are plaguing the world currently but will increase ten folds in the coming years.
Water is essential for life and there is no sustainability without water. Although our earth is composed of 70% of water, the water that can be consumed by living beings is still very less. Because 97% of earth’s water is saline.
On the other hand, the freshwater reservoirs that we have are depleting at a rate of 4.3 trillion cubic meters every year. Most of this freshwater is consumed in agricultural and industrial uses, and this has resulted in more than two billion humans having no access to safe drinking water currently, as per the United Nations Water. This water shortage is increasing day by day and as per estimates, by 2050, water availability in cities will reduce by more than 66%.
These are some worrying basic stats and our tech companies like Microsoft are taking special interest to combat this situation, and for that, the company has announced a detailed plan which will help in conserving water, reducing consumption, and increasing the replenishment.
Microsoft’s water replenishing strategies include investments in future projects for wetland restoration, removal of surfaces that allow water penetration, like Asphalt. This will help in water going back to water basins rather than seeping through surfaces.
Currently, there are more than 16000 freshwater basins, out of which more than 4000 are considered as highly stressed basins in which withdrawn water exceeds more than 40% of the renewable supply.
Microsoft plans to build a sustainability design which will include an on-site rainwater collection system and wastewater recycling treatment plan for its new Silicon Valley campus opening soon in California. The aim is to make 100% of the site’s non-potable water to come from recycled sources on the site only. This will help to save around 4 million gallons of potable water each year.
Another plan includes water-efficient plumbing fixtures that can conserve water by 35% in the new campus of Microsoft in Israel. Water from air conditioners will be collected and used to water plants on the campus too.
Microsoft also plans to save around 5.8 million gallons of water yearly by making their office buildings re-use harvested rainwater in flush and low-flow fixture systems. By employing methods of ‘adiabatic cooling’ and ‘swamp cooling,’ Microsoft is planning to replenish water in its new datacenter region in Arizona by the end of this year.
So, with some of these innovative technologies, Microsoft is confident to become water positive by 2030 with the help of government and non-government organizations.
Photo: Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images