Freshwater has been so plentiful for so long that we have taken it for granted. Today, we use more water than ever before — to quench our thirst, grow our food, power our industries and dispose of our waste. Until recently, in geologic terms, we have been able to wait for nature to recycle our wastewater back into usable freshwater. No more. As a species, we’ll have to learn to use our technology and political will to put an end to wasted water.

This special report picks up where the February 27, 2019, conference, “Resource Revolution of Water Reuse,” left off, exploring the scope of the global water crisis and the possible ways forward.