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The Documentary Film “Flow: For Love of Water” Essay

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Updated: May 20th, 2021

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The film FLOW (Salina, 2008) highlights numerous issues with freshwater, some of which are not well known by the public. Because of this, I have a hard time describing the complex set of emotions caused by it in one word. I believe the most appropriate word would be “frightening.” There are two reasons for this. First, the issue in question is in direct relation to the welfare of the entire planet’s population, and the film makes a convincing case that there are reasons to worry. Second, the scope of the problem as presented in the documentary is such that there seems to be little chance to change things for the better. In the end, I believe that the film needs to be frightening to prompt the response of the audience.

Several solutions come to mind as ways to address the problems presented in the film. However, I admit that most of them are in the domain of speculation. For instance, I expect that as a result of technological progress, new ways of water conservation and reuse will be invented, which would alleviate the problem. However, such an approach is more wishful thinking than a feasible solution. Therefore, I would suggest education and awareness as two ways of addressing the problem. Aside from benefits for the general public, such an approach would improve the adoption of various policies, as I think that currently at least some poor decisions of policymakers are caused by insufficient understanding of the issue and could be prevented by educational effort.

The film is especially important for the American audience since there is little recognition of the issue in the U.S. I think this is likely because of the FDA regulations and the general level of welfare in the country. When someone has virtually unlimited access to high-quality drinking water, it becomes difficult to comprehend the problems of the people from less developed countries. In effect, the abundance of water in the U.S. creates a false impression that the issue is non-existent.

The privatization of water is among the concerns raised in the film (Salina, 2008). While it poses a serious threat to the well-being of the population, especially in developing countries, I don’t think that is necessarily illegitimate. I can think of several advantages offered by the practice. If entities that own water supplies are well-meaning and responsible, they can improve both the quality of water and access to it for the general public. Admittedly, ownership opens up the possibility of abuse, but is not its immediate outcome, so ownership does not necessarily result in mistreatment.

Numerous initiatives and organizations were created to address the issue. Admittedly, it is difficult to evaluate their success due to the diversity of their goals. Therefore, it would be reasonable to consider their visibility and success in finding support a sign of success. From such a perspective, Generosity.org is among the most successful organizations, since it is currently credited for funding 778 projects in 20 countries and hosts “A Night of Generosity,” one of the most significant fundraising events (Generosity.org, n.d.).

Response

The opinions stated in the post, for the most part, coincide with those presented in my response to the film, with a single notable difference that I would like to address. I think that the author did a great job of highlighting the difficulties that accompany the suggested technical solution to the problem (i.e. the use of UV light). However, I would like to point out a single fallacy that undermines the credibility of the argument. Owning of water is neither more nor less legitimate than that of land. You need both for survival, and both have the potential for abuse of power. Therefore, it is not the fact of ownership that must raise concerns, but the ways it is utilized – in both cases.

References

Generosity.org. (n.d.). Our impact. Web.

Salina, I. (Director). (2008). Flow: For love of water [Video file]. Web.

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IvyPanda. (2021, May 20). The Documentary Film "Flow: For Love of Water". Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-documentary-film-flow-for-love-of-water/

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"The Documentary Film "Flow: For Love of Water"." IvyPanda, 20 May 2021, ivypanda.com/essays/the-documentary-film-flow-for-love-of-water/.

1. IvyPanda. "The Documentary Film "Flow: For Love of Water"." May 20, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-documentary-film-flow-for-love-of-water/.


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IvyPanda. "The Documentary Film "Flow: For Love of Water"." May 20, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-documentary-film-flow-for-love-of-water/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "The Documentary Film "Flow: For Love of Water"." May 20, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-documentary-film-flow-for-love-of-water/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'The Documentary Film "Flow: For Love of Water"'. 20 May.

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