Recently, I was in Nebraska on vacation or to visit family more specifically -- which was much different than California. The inevitable discussion emerged between my brother-in-law, his boss (a cattle rancher) and myself centered around the drought in California. Any time that people from other states in the U.S. (either visiting or welcoming a visitor - me) find out that I am originally from California, a discussion emerges surrounding the drought crisis in California. Often times, I learn a new fact or piece of information that I previously did not know. In this instance, I learned that a farmer's dimensional analysis of a water crisis is projected in terms of cattle (not surprisingly). Below are the details of this wonderful and informative interaction.
Cattle Consume Water?
Of course cattle drink water! That did not surprise me in the least. What did surprise me was the discussion surrounding the drought in California. Over lunch (as mentioned above) a discussion emerged that had do to with the continuous drought conditions in California. My brother-in-law's boss was grilling me about California.
Not surprising since I stuck out in the restaurant like a "sore-thumb". Why you might ask? Here is a picture of my brother-in-law and his boss below:
As we were discussing the drought in California, I decided to throw out on the table one of my newly discovered statistics about water usage in California. Which of the many do I speak of? I decided to discuss the difference in water consumption in water use -- which I wrote a blog post about a few months back. Here is the main statistic that blew my mind from Harper's shown below:
Over lunch I went ahead and gave a quick statement to invoke a response of surprise between the two residents of Los Angeles. I stated the the typical LA resident uses 107 gallons of water per day. He was not surprised at the amount. Next, I stated that the average 'Bel Air' resident uses 32,000 gallons of water per day. WOW.
What was his response?
He rapidly returned with the statement: "On a hot day, one of my cows will drink max 20 gallons of water. I guess that equals 1600 cattle then now doesn't it."
I had to stop and run the math in my head for a moment. I was amazed at his perspective. In retrospect, as a cattle rancher, this makes perfect sense. He is concerned from the standpoint of how much water is required to keep his cattle optimized. I will show the calculation below:
There are two avenues by which to verify the cattle rancher (Scott's) quick calculation. First, take both of his numbers and multiply them together. Second, divide the total number of gallons by the number of gallons per cattle to get the total number of cattle. Either way, the calculations are straightforward. You might find yourself asking the following question:
So what? Big deal -- Everyone knows that Bel Air residents are outrageous water consumers?
True. From that conversation, I took home a few pieces of information -- which I will share:
1) Each of us look at life from a different perspective.
2) Each of us have our own reference point.
3) Each of us are unique.
4) Each Bel Air reside consumes as much water as 1600 cows on a daily basis!!!!
Look, I have wrote blog posts in the past about the outrageous use of water consumers here in California. Also, I have wrote about the amount of rain in a few inches of rain fall. I have to admit that this is the first time that I have used cows as a tool for dimensional analysis. The results are staggering.
In closing, each of us have a different perspective on how to view life. Further, for a farmer in Nebraska, the mention of water usage causes him to 'default' to his cows -- which makes perfect sense. Think about the number of cattle that could be drinking next time you turn on the faucet. How many cows are you starving? Until next time, have a great day!