Earlier this month, Smithsonian Education kicked off its 2012 Shout online conference series, “Water Matters.” The February 7-8 webinars, the first in a series of sessions, focused on “Water Questions: When We Want to Learn More.” The remaining conference sessions are set for late March and mid- May.
The webinars are led by Smithsonian experts from various disciplines, including science, culture, art, music and more. The webinars served in quenching our thirst for water knowledge, inspiring us to share the top 5 most interesting water facts we imbibed from the Shout presentation:
- 97% of the earth’s water is salt water (1% is fresh water, 2% is ice in glaciers).
- In water-starved areas of Africa, women and children can spend 15-30 hours a week in transporting water for their use.
- Studies of changing ocean temperatures show dramatically that the earth’s water is getting warmer.
- Photos of the Earth from space depict where the Amazon, the world’s largest river by water flow, starts from high in the Andes of Peru as a little mountain steam fed by melting snow.
- In areas of the world where there is too much water, design experts are creating houses that will better withstand flooding.
The Shout online conference series also includes hands-on activities for students, including the new Smithsonian Badges program, where students can earn digital badges for their knowledge of environmental topics and participation in community activities.
If you’re interested in learning more about water, Shout is hosting two more webinar sessions: “Water Quantity: When There’s Too Much or Too Little” on March 26-27, and “Water Quality: When It’s Not Clean and Healthy” on May 16-17.