190 litres of water are needed to obtain one glass of orange juice. 125 for an apple. 1,250 for a pizza. A T-shirt requires 2,500 litres of water and a car, 30,000.
The water footprint is the indicator used to calculate total water consumption per person and year for an individual, company, city or country. In addition to what we use for direct personal consumption (drinking, cooking, washing) and collective consumption (watering parks and gardens, public fountains, street cleaning), we need to add the fresh water necessary to produce products and services (virtual water).
On importing products which require a lot of water for their production, countries “import” water from other countries, so they outsource an important part of their water footprint. This represents an added pressure on the water resources of the exporting countries, which often do not have a water governance policy.
Water is a global resource which requires a worldwide policy. In addition to the involvement of international organizations and governments, as citizens and companies we can also contribute to better management of water resources.