Mitchell Reports | April 20, 2012
>>> it's something we take for granted the ability to turn on faucets and have a glass of water. not always in some cities but the lack of clean drinking water is a crisis that does affect billions of people around the world particularly women and children . joining me now for nbc's green is universal week is m. sanjayan, lead scientist for the nature conservancy . thank you for sharing your insights with us. i remember when i was in darfur and it was the water, the search for water that made the women of these villages so vulnerable because they had to go and find a well and that's when they were attacked by the ma lishia. so water is just a profound problem in all of these areas.
>> en thank you, andrea, for having me here right on the eve of earth day weekend. you're absolutely right. 800 million people really suffer from a chronic lack of water. water is hugely important for growing our crops. yet, if you go out on the streets and ask someone, where does your water come from, the answer you'll get is the tap. and that's been the systemic underestimation of where already water comes from. we spend ? so much effort northwest focusing on the faucet, if you will, we don't think about the forests. i want to make sure people understand that water isn't just created out of thin air. it's created from nature. if you want to make sure people on the planet have clean water over the long period of time, you need to make sure that our faucets are there but also forests are there and create that link.
>> tell us about picnic for a planet. it's a wonderfully embracing and intriguing idea.
>> right, so earth day started 40 years ago by a senator from wisconsin. this earth day what we really want people to do is go outside with their kids and families and enjoy what nature has to offer. we want people to take food, take water, take something to drink out there and relate the food that you have, ideally local and organic, ideally to nature. food is the one time, food and water that unites all of us as, and if we can relate to the food we have and share it will outside in nature, then i think we're one step closer to understanding that nature provides all the stuff for us that we essentially take for granted. so celebrate this by going to a picnic for the planet. if you go to nature.org, you can get lots of instructions. we hope in 60 countries plus, tens of thousands of people will join us in the largest picnic on the planet.
>> what an exciting idea. it's such a teaching moment for parents and children to understand the linkages, the connections.
>> absolutely. i don't want people to say food comes from supermarkets. i don' want people to say water comes from taps. i want them to understand that next link and think about pollinators how nutrients cycle. that's the whole point of it. the other part is on this weekend is, conservation and saving the earth is expensive. i really do want people to take that extra time and help support conservation organizations like the nature conservancy and others to do more work.
>> well, weise taking that appeal to heart. thank you very much. thanks for joining us. for more green ideas and tips, do check out our website, green is universal.com.