Wars Over Water


Ethics refers to principles or values of positive conduct or structures of moral and honest values. Ethical issues are moral concerns that have both positive and negative impacts that govern the human behavior of the moral value that we see in our surroundings. The positive or negative behaviors of moral values that arise in our day-to-day society have positive or negative impacts on us. Ethics is what generally makes human beings distinguish between what we view as right or wrong within our society. The way we distinguish between what we believe as acceptable and what we see to be unacceptable are the norms of conduct, which are well known as ethics. Ethical issues or norms are what drive human beings to be judgmental to the extent of being regarded as commonsense. It revolves around our behavior on being judgmental on all issues that arise among us. People interpret, balance and subscribe to different paradigms on ethical norms that are deemed common among us because we have different life experiences and view human values in our own understanding.

Wars of Water

Wars over water are ethical issues that affect humanity and their surroundings. It is an issue influencing our environment and behavior based on the fact that it has negative effects to us as seen from the 20th century of wars being fueled by the scarcity of oil. War has a devastating effect on humanity and its existence, causing loss of lives and properties and reduces productivity of a region in the economic sector of countries. Over the years, the effect of war has been seen clearly to cause harm and negatively impact on human beings and their surrounding which is the environment. Wars have been caused mainly by political differences, religious differences and the scarcity of natural resources like oil that fuel misunderstanding between people who fight for the cause they deem positive to them. In recent studies, war has been forecast to happen in the near future as a result in the scarcity of water. This has happened before in Sudan’s Darfur where nearly 400,000 people were killed because of the war that was fueled by the natural resource that is water. The ethical debate in this essay concerns the issue of the future wars that may be waged over water and the rights to it and how it affects humanity in the moral values that surround us. This debate has weighed on the extent to which future wars are expected to be fueled by the scarcity of water.

Wars of Water as an Ethical Issue

Because of the climate change that the world is experiencing, there is a future possibility on a humanitarian level that the world will be devastated. This is clearly seen in the sense that out of the seven billion people in the world, between five to four billion are currently living in situations in which they have limited access to water resources. Currently, the world’s water reserves have diminished considerably; a fact that is worrying the global community; it is intimated that by 2025, such locations will be in die hard situation for the population to access clean water for consumption. The effects of climate change such as the increase in desert areas and the melting of ice in the Polar Regions are clear indications of the devastating effect that the world is experiencing. The populace needs to establish modus operandi for distributing our resources for the global benefit of the future generation. Water shortage over the past few years has espoused the onset drought has affected different regions simultaneously leading to shortage of food. A 10 percent decrease in food production due to drought caused by the scarcity of water will lead to a 50 percent increase in the demand for food, increasing the food prices at the same level. An increase in global prices of basic commodities will prompt populaces to revolt against their governments and wars will erupt on a global scale.

Currently, the global community is not prepared for the future water scarcity that is expected to happen with few measures put in place, such as the stockpiling of water reserves and measures to protect the sources of water and reducing water pollution that is escalating globally. Currently, about 2.5 percent of the world’s water is deemed to be fresh and the trend is decreasing fast; it is anticipated that in the next few years, water will be a scare natural resource and humanity will have to fight for it. Future wars will be attributed to this precious commodity due to its scarcity seeing as the world population is increasing at a high rate.

Four-way method of ethical decision-making by Kyte in Wars of water

The four-way method of the ethical explanation to decision-making ascribed to Rick Kyte tries to explain how ethical norms apply to the issue of future wars being fueled by the scarcity of water from the ethical perspective. This approach to ethical decision-making revolves around truth, consequences, fairness and character that dictate the decision-making process of identifying the norms and values that affect us either positively or negatively. In light of water as a resource, the four-way method intimates how water is becoming scarcer based on the fact that the world’s water usage over the past century has grown twice as fast as the growth of the human population. It helps improve our paradigms on the ethical problems that affect us. The arguments used in ethical reasoning always use one or more of the four tenets of the ethical decision-making process. These four decision-making tenets function to determine if the ethical issue is acceptable or unacceptable to human beings. The ethical issue ascribed to water scarcity has reached a point where the world needs to device new methods that encourage the productive use of the existing water reserves and resources that are currently available for human consumption.

Kyte’s decision-making method represents global arguments on the inefficient use of water resources and its allocation in the economy. Water consumption is doubling up every year while climate change is eating up water sources as human beings continue polluting the environment. Truth, consequences, fairness and character have played a role in the arguments associated with the world’s development of long-lasting solutions for saving the world’s resource.

Truth ethical decision-making method

In future, wars being fueled by the scarcity of water are bound to be a reality. The issue of water scarcity will spark future wars and the only solution is to face the reality of the issue and device ways of preventing it from happening. Technology can be used to device ways of stockpiling water and quick ways to fix the water scarcity by reducing pollution rates by adapting scientific approaches that will help us secure this precious resource for the future generation. The world is experiencing an exponential shift in natural resource usage that has seen the population suffer from what has now come to be the scarcity of water. Global experts are warning that in future more devastating effects will be felt and result in wars and political instability because the demand for water will exceed what the resource will offer the extrapolated global population. The diminishing water levels in sources like rivers is a clear indication of how grave the issue is.

Consequence ethical decision-making method

The consequences of future wars being fueled by the scarcity of water will result in the loss of lives, the destruction of properties and the environment and affect the economy of the war-affected areas. Human beings will be the most affected creatures on earth because war has devastating negative impacts on the loss of lives. The solution to such wars is to prepare the world adequately for the foreseen future outcome of wars that re expected to arise because of the scarcity of water. Even though water is seen as a natural resource that is free to humanity, there is a future possibility that this will be quite costly because it is getting scarcer each day owing to pollution and the wearing out of the Ozone layer. The high population that will be competing for the resource will exhibit hostility, contentiousness and resentment among people. Environmental experts see a continuous persistence in water scarcity in the most affected regions like North Africa where the precious resource remains scarce, increasing future anxiety on the supply of water. This future anxiety is caused by competition in accessing the scarce commodity, resulting in wars that have in the past affected regions like Darfur and other North African tribal wars that have seen many people dead.

Fairness ethical decision-making method

Fairness is a tenet that cannot possibly be identified from the future wars being fueled by the scarcity of water because this war will not be fair to the affected people. If solutions are put in place like protecting water catchment areas and reducing pollution levels, the outcome of the expected future wars fueled by the scarcity of water will have less devastating impacts on people. From the ethical positive view, these solutions will positively influence everyone because there will be no wars if water is protected for the future generations to come. Solutions can be reached if people work together for the common goal of protecting this natural resource and preventing future wars, which will be fueled by the scarcity of water. Long-term solutions will enhance the lives of every person in the world because they will have reduced the chance of the future wars that would have been fueled by the scarcity of water.

Character ethical decision-making method

Wars have deadly and harmful repercussions to humanity and its environment, which I strongly propose for the idea of protecting our natural resource of water for the betterment of our future and towards avoiding the outcome of war that may be triggered due to its scarcity. Protecting our natural water resources is what all humans want for the sole purpose of survival.

Without water, humanity will go through extinction and by making great initiatives to protect this resource a netter future is imminent. Avoiding future wars b fueled by the scarcity of water will have positive outcome in the long run and those involved in the implementation of correctional measures will be remembered as heroes who saved the would from a disaster.

Two opposing ethical decision making methods from Kyte Four-way method Model

Water is becoming scarcer as a vital resource in the survival of humanity. Two opposing perspectives of ethical decision-making which are truth and consequences play a vigorous roles in informing people of the fact that this water crisis is expected to cause social unrest, war and geopolitical friction among humanity. It is important for us to note that the fact that the scarcity of water can be caused in modern society by the lack of adequate supply of water as per the high demand of industrialized populations and the urbanized global growth of people which can lead to war. The consequences, given the earthly wave of environmental degradation of our natural resources as recorded by scientists in animals, trees and fish is a clear indication of how they are becoming less copious over the decades and may eventually disappear. Though truth and consequences oppose each other from the ethical perspective, humanity needs to embrace this issue before it goes out of hand.

Argument that is stronger between the two opposing ethical decision making methods

There is a global nightmare that the scarcity of natural resources like water is already converging and in the coming few decades the world is expected to experience unrest, conflicts, rebellion and competition for these scarce resources that are expected to fuel war over the resource. This is a clear fact and truth on the ethical issue that is deemed to affect humanity. As a fact and truth, this crisis is expected to hit most parts of Africa and the Central Asian region. The consequences of this crisis will be strong owing to the scarcity of water that is expected to cause global riots over food owing to shortages and wars over contested river sources and the entire river system in a global perspective. Mass migrations of refugees are expected to increase due to climatic change and a further breakdown of the collapse of governments because of soaring prices of food commodities that will espouse the crumbling of economies. Between the two opposing arguments of truth and consequences, the truth on the future outcome of wars of water is strong majorly because the world is changing at a high pace that is expected to shock humanity.


Water is the most precious natural resource for human survival. It espouses agricultural productivity products and other activities in the industrial sector. About 97 percent of the world’s sources of water is in oceans while 1 percent is locked up in the polar region as glacier and ice caps leaving us with only 2 percent for human consumption, industrial usage and the agriculture sector. Nearly 60 percent of the world’s illnesses are related to water problems and about 2.4 billion people do not have access to decent and clean water supply. Many countries have come up with different methods of saving this scarce resource with some like Britain arguing citing water privatization, effective regulations on water and water metering measures. Australia and California also suggested solutions in the allocation of scarce water sources. Saudi Arabia on the other hand recommended the use of desalinated water from the oceans for agriculture purposes. Various countries have made all these recommendations as remedies to the burning issue of water scarcity that is escalating. They are viable to the extent that they govern the usage of water and their sources, while others that build dams for stockpiles and privatization also regulate how the public consumes water and foresee future reservations and ways of protecting the diminishing resource.

Technology also comes in handy, for instance the desalinating technique of cleaning ocean water for use in the agricultural sector. Water should be privatized in some areas while in other places it ought to be nationalized depending on the governments involved. Debates on whether or not the access to clean water should be a human right have been rife in the past. Water is a fundamental right for humanity because it sustains life. I highly recommend that governments should secure the ownership of water resources for the wellbeing of humanity and prevent future wars and limit the privatization of the commodity by established corporate entities.


Political and economic factors should help us come up with decisive solutions on how to tackle this ethical issue of future wars because of the scarcity of water for the future benefit of humanity. Governments should come up with approaches of stockpiling water and nationalize water for the sake of preventing future wars that are deemed to happen because of the continuous diminishing of water resource that is leading to its scarcity. The government as a law-abiding body needs to inform and educate the population on the effects and outcomes of the future if we do not protect our water and dictate the way forward in implementing this protective measure. Other environmental organizations should also take part in educating the world for on proper resource conservation approaches to avoid imminent resource wars, which will be fueled by the scarcity of water.

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