Optimism seeps through cracks in dam of water woes

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Optimism is starting to seep through cracks in the dam of global water woes. On the surface, H2O's future looks bleak, with demand rising, drought spreading and more nations using it as a weapon of war. Many governments and companies, though, are acknowledging the threat – and sensing opportunity.

That's clear from this year's World Water Day. Major corporations are using the event, which the United Nations started in 1993, to commit to consuming less water, improving reuse and cajoling suppliers to do the same. Anheuser-Busch InBev, Genentech and Kellogg were among the major companies making such pledges on Tuesday.