October 13 - 15, 2013
- Hyatt Regency Newport
1 Goat Island
Newport, R.I. 02840 Launch Map
Water is the world’s most precious commodity. Consider that human civilization existed—and in some cases thrived—for millennia without petroleum. Protesters have gone without food for well-more than a month. But human beings will die within days if they don’t have access to fresh water.
The issues that arise from water’s use, misuse, pollution, and distribution will drive a long-list of global events in this century. From the Middle East, where cooperation over water-resources has forced long-time adversaries to cooperate, to the American Mid-West, where reliance on the Ogallala Aquifer poses challenges to farmers, ranchers and even energy companies, there is no more universal human challenge than assuring access to fresh water.
The men and women who work the oceans tell a similar story of a changing environment, increasing competition for fisheries, stocks of fish declining, and subtle but profound shifts in ocean chemistry that affect the life within it. In the Arctic, rapidly expanding tracks of ice-free ocean promise an economic boom with potential hazards for the environment and competition—if not conflict—between states.
And in humanity’s quest for ever-more energy, water has become both a necessity for and—in some cases—the cost of advances in extracting petroleum and natural gas from the Earth.
In October 2013, join the Association of Opinion Journalists, the Pell Center at Salve Regina University in Newport, Rhode Island, for a conference that explores the risks, challenges, and opportunities on this water-dependent planet.