The Hidden Water We Use

The National Geographic website has several interactive activities, but one that I found particularly interesting was titled “The Hidden Water We Use,” which describes the amount of water embedded in objects we use everyday.  It describes how much water is used in each step of production of things like food and energy.

One that I found very surprising was the water used in producing 1 pound of chocolate – which I happen to eat a lot of! To make 1 pound of dark chocolate, 3,170 gallons of water are used. (3,993.8 gallons goes into making of 1 pound cocoa paste, and 6,091.7 gallons go into making 1 pound of cocoa butter!)


Another interesting part of this website was comparing products.  I compared wind energy and biomass energy and found that wind energy consumes no water, while biomass energy consumes 66.57 gallons of water per kilowatt hour.  Also interesting was that hydropower consumes 20.92 gallons of water per kilowatt hour and oil consumes 1.01 gallons of water per kilowatt hour.

There were also a few fun quizzes that I found, and realized I learned a lot of the information from class.  Try them out and see how well you can do!

1 thought on “The Hidden Water We Use

  1. I found this website really interesting. I was especially shocked by how much water goes into 1 pound of chocolate too, and how much goes into 1 gallon of wine. I really liked that it offered a breakdown of where most of that water was going, though, so that you can tell how the water is used in the making of the item. I also found it fascinating that under the grains and starches, it said what percentage of global water is used for agricultural crop production. Though it’s possible to find this kind of statistics elsewhere, I really like that the National Geographic made an effort to make this website interactive because it is more understandable and accessible for inexpert viewers. Very interesting website, Kendel!

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