Water Portraits – Making A Splash For Water Conservation (PHOTOS)

water portrait, middle east, north africa, scarcity, conservationIn a bid to highlight our water use and waste, photographer Peter Holmes has created a series of memorable portraits of water use in different countries. 

“Statistics about water consumption are difficult to comprehend and are un-relatable to everyday life – this project attempts to make water consumption visible in a meaningful way.” Well, that’s one way to justify dumping water over people doing something innocent like reading or drinking a cup of tea from places as far afield as Canada and Morocco. It took photographer Peter Holmes over two years to complete the portraits which “bridge the gap between statistics and significance of water use” in a bid to make it more ‘visible’. The stunning results are featured below.

water portrait, middle east, north africa, scarcity, conservation

According to Holmes, the water is dumped on the people doing something which takes around one hour. There were no second takes – which I am sure the subjects appreciated! The photos do however give a really visceral sense of the amount of water use disparity there is. In Morocco the average person uses 4.5 litres per hour (top image) whilst in California the average person uses 32 liters every hour. Indeed, the USA did pretty bad overall with the average American using 23.75 liters every hour – so those lovely volunteers were really in for a soaking.

water portrait, middle east, north africa, scarcity, conservation

Europe didn’t do too badly – Belgians use 4.3 liters per hour, Serbians consume 5.3 liters per hour and the Spanish use 12 liters. In England it was 4.9 liters per person every hour and 3.8 liters per person every hour in the Netherlands. Turkey was closer to European standards than the rest of MENA with the average person using 9.3 Liters every hour.

water portrait, middle east, north africa, scarcity, conservation

For more on water in MENA see:
Water Scarcity Leads More To Peace Than War (INTERVIEW)
Jordan Struggles To Provide Water For Syrian Refugees
Middle East and Med Cities Face 100-year Floods 

All photos via Peter Holmes / Water Portraits on Flickr.

About Arwa Aburawa

Arwa is a Muslim freelance writer who is interested in everything climate change related and how Islam can inspire more people to care for their planet and take active steps to save it while we can. She is endlessly suspicious of all politicians and their ceaseless meetings, especially as they make normal people believe that they are not part of the solution when they are the ONLY solution. Her Indian auntie is her model eco-warrier, and when Arwa is not busy helping out in the neighborhood alleyway garden, swap shopping or attempting fusion vegetarian dishes- with mixed success, she’d like to add- she can be found sipping on foraged nettle tea. You can find all of Arwa’s published work on her freelance site, and check out her musing on her blog. You can contact her @arwa_journalist or via arwa (at) greenprophet.com

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