South Africa was the first country to announce their approach to “Day Zero.” This day signified the day that their water reservoirs would fall below their ability to sustain their water needs. Cape Town, South Africa took drastic measures to protect their city and their people from the impending doom of a looming water shut off. The steps they took to save their city and push back “Day Zero” is a model that should be recognized and followed all around the world.

In 2016, California, who has suffered from recent droughts, used 321 liters per person per day. In comparison, Cape Town reduced their usage to 50 liters per person per day. If they repeatedly go over this threshold they will have a meter installed on their home that shuts off their water when they exceed their allotment. As America is the land of the free, Talia does not want the American people to have to make such a drastic change to their lives or ever be at risk of running out of water. This means our leaders must take active measures to protect us from such a fate.

Conservation Efforts

To ensure that the American people never have to experience the reality in South Africa, we must recognize what we need in a representative has changed. We deserve and require a representative who will not sell our groundwater or any of our water resources to a corporation. There is an Arizona Representative who, when Mayor, brokered deals with Corporations like Nestle’ Water.

During a time of drought, Arizona’s groundwater was sold to Nestle’ Bottling Company. This deal brought 15 jobs to Arizona and the water was sold to them at the same price as what a Phoenix resident would pay. There was no profit or benefit for the people of Arizona. Thankfully the plant was shuttered in 2019 because of the efforts of protestors and decreased sales. Nestle never made good on their promises of bringing 40+ jobs to Arizona and didn’t bring any benefit to the people of Arizona.

As our climate shifts, we need to be conscious of our natural resources and water is the most important resource to our families, livestock, and farm land. We must have representatives willing to protect our water and fight corporations from unnecessarily bottling our water. The future will largely depend on how we implement water saving techniques such as at home gray water processing systems, reducing the amount of water that is wasted, and stopping water pollution at its source.

We are in changing times and in order to be a warrior for our natural resources, we need our representatives in Congress to go a step further in creating social change. We need them to use their own resources and power to get behind activist movements that are helping to educate the people of the United States and the citizens of Arizona Congressional District 9. In the past, representatives used their power to build relationships with corporations and the elite of our country. This led to the advancement of their personal careers, but not that of the American people. We cannot continue to elect politicians who just want to climb the political ladder because we’ve reached a critical time in history and we NEED representatives who understand the urgency.

Social Media’s Impact

Online social media movements are having the greatest impact on large scale social change. Viral moments are reminding people of their own social obligations. Members of Congress and politicians in general are behind the curve when it comes to their social engagement online. This has allowed individuals like the current administration to be elected and establishment Democrats cannot understand why. Having an online presence is incredibly important to protect our natural resources and now our democracy. The people of our country are done and can see through PR, prepared statements. They make our representatives sound disconnected from the rest of society.

As Democrats, we must accept this changing political landscape, because saving our natural resources will largely depend on how well a representative is able to connect to online movements that inspire cultural change. It’s important that we understand how drastically an online presence can steer social growth and the public’s perspective on our natural resources. The most important natural resource to be conserved in Arizona Congressional District 9 is our water. Thanks to science paired with technology, we have produced innovative conservation methods.

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