Special Report: Water vs. Energy

Newswise — Charge a smartphone in the United States and about half a liter of water has to flow through kilometers of pipe to cool the nation’s power plants. Your flashy little phone may not drink much, but add up all the half-liters used to generate the 17-some-odd megawatt-hours that the world will burn through this year. Trust us, it’s a lot of water. In the United States alone, on just one average day, 500 million metric tons of fresh water flow through the country’s power plants–about the same amount that irrigates its fields for agriculture or more than twice the volume flowing through the Nile.

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