Highlights from Our Hidden Water Footprint Salon

1. Aparna Sridhar, policy advisor at The Nature Conservancy, remembers visiting her grandparents in India during monsoon season when she was growing up and brushing her teeth with a rationed amount of water, despite the monsoons.

“You think, how is that juxtaposition happening?” Sridhar said. "There's this flooding, and the city just keeps moving on, but you're still asked within the household to manage your water — cause there's going to be a drought later on. You never know when it's going to stop."

Sridhar and The Nature Conservancy work to show people that water comes from far beyond the tap. They work with farmers to use nature to help manage, conserve, and produce clean water.

2. Eliza Swedenborg, research analyst for the Water Program at the World Resources Institute, learned about water conservation when she was a Peace Corps member in Mali. Swedenborg is part of the World Resources Institute’s Aqueduct Initiative, a resource that informs people of the supply and demand of water. The goal of the Aqueduct Initiative is to provide farmers, businesses, and students with data about water demand across the globe to mitigate risk.

3. Walt and Ellen Moore own a dairy farm in Chester County, Pennsylvania, that has been in the family for 108 years. With 850 milking cows, Walt Moore says water is a daily concern, but is fortunate to average 40 inches of rainfall a year. Moore partners with the Stroud Water Research Center to develop the most efficient water usage practices. upstream - small tributaries that flow into our cities; what practices nearby

“Farmers are some of the oldest conservationists; we’ve had to adapt and learn,” Moore said.

4. Matt Carstens of Land O’Lakes, Inc., and head of their new SUSTAIN initiative, connects farmers with businesses to develop sustainable practices. Carstens emphasized the importance of education and storytelling. Land O’Lakes provides tools for farmers to conserve water.

5. Jason Haber, GW alum and author of “The Business of Good,” says that the battle of this century will be about food and water. Haber is a storyteller working to inform people about the global water crisis and more efficient and sustainable business practices.

“You can lead a horse to water, but they're only going to drink if you tell a good story,” Haber said.

How do you move the Planet Forward? Tweet us @planet_forward or contribute to the conversation with your own story.