Water & Sanitation

Local School Is a Model for Energy and Water in Rapa Nui

A school in the capital of Easter Island (Rapa Nui, in the local indigenous tongue) gives an example of clean management with the use of solar energy, rainwater recovery and an organic vegetable garden, as well as rooms and spaces built with waste materials.

Reverse Engineering for SDGs

When young people from small towns and villages seek higher education they have to usually migrate to big cities leaving their local communities behind. On completion of their degree from the Universities, they generally prefer staying in cities, in search of a good job and a successful career. Though this is a standard practice, it is also a case of lost opportunities, especially for students who pursue higher education in agriculture. Here is why.

Blue Economy: The New Frontier for Africa’s Growth & How Japan Can Help

1. Why Blue Economy in Africa? What potentials does Africa have? The blue economy in Africa is neglected, ignored or underexploited, but it can offer a range of African solutions to African economic problems. More than one-quarter of Africa’s population lives within 100km of the coast and derive their livelihoods there. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), by 2020, the annual economic value of energy activities related to maritime affairs will reach EUR 2.5bn.1 Out of the 54 African countries, 34 are coastal countries and over 90% of African exports and imports are transported by sea. The territorial waters under African jurisdiction cover a surface area of 13 million km², with a continental shelf of some 6.5 million km² comprising exclusive economic zones (EEZ). The continent covers 17% of the world’s surface water resources. The strategic dimension of the blue economy is an indisputable reality for African countries. It is for this reason that it has been included in the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and that a practical handbook on the blue economy was prepared by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa in March 2016.

Removing Arsenic from Groundwater: We Have the Tools, Let’s Use Them

Cost-effective technologies are available to remove arsenic in groundwater. Why then do tens of millions still fall ill to this chronic problem? High natural levels of arsenic are characteristic of the groundwater supply in many countries, including Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Mongolia, and the United States.

Moving Beyond Just Building Toilets

One of the most laudable initiatives of the current government’s regime is the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) that was launched on Oct 2, 2014, with a larger vision of a clean India. The critical aspect of the mission was that—unlike many of the movements that preceded it—this had a measurable outcome (making India open defecation free) and a firm timeline (by 2019).

Wasting & Dining: the New Water Dilemma

Concerns about the supply side of food systems are shifting from insufficient production and supply, to issues likely to affect food production in the medium and long term, such as water risks, global warming and environmental consequences.

Why We Should Care about Vulnerable Coastal Communities

According to UN statistics, approximately 40 per cent of the world’s population lives within 100 kilometers of the coast, and overall the world’s coastal population is increasing faster than the total global population. At the same time, global warming is causing sea levels to rise and increasing extreme weather incidents on coastlines.

Water, an Environmental Product of Agriculture in Brazil

For the first time in her life, retired physical education teacher Elizabeth Ribeiro planted a tree, thorny papaya, native to Brazil's central savanna.

Citizen Action in Europe’s Periphery: “An Antidote to Powerlessness”

Unjustified extra charges on drinking water, exploitation of labourers in the countryside and uncontrolled property speculation. In Europe’s periphery, citizens' initiatives show how all too prevalent modern-day ailments can be tackled successfully. More often than not with the help of artists.

Watering the Paris Agreement at COP24

Most people will experience climate change in the form of water – higher frequency and intensity of floods and droughts, an increase in waterborne diseases, and overloaded sewage systems that are unable to cope with new demands.

Northeast Nigeria: Urgent Need to Combat Deadly Cholera Outbreaks

The number of people who have been affected by cholera in northeast Nigeria has increased to 10,000. The disease is spreading quickly in congested displacement camps with limited access to proper sanitation facilities.

Diversifying Crops to Help Overcome Drought in Brazil

Dozens of trucks used to leave São Gonçalo every day, carrying the local agricultural production, mainly coconuts, to markets throughout Brazil, including the cities of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, more than 2,000 kilometers away.

Rainwater Harvesting Eases Daily Struggle in Argentina’s Chaco Region

"I've been used to hauling water since I was eight years old. Today, at 63, I still do it," says Antolín Soraire, a tall peasant farmer with a face ravaged by the sun who lives in Los Blancos, a town of a few dozen houses and wide dirt roads in the province of Salta, in northern Argentina.

Ambitious Agenda, Ambitious Financing? UNGA Shows a Long Way Still to Go for SDGs

There was a much-needed focus on financing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the September 2018 opening of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

Cholera Threatens a Comeback Worldwide

Cholera outbreaks across history regularly killed a hundred thousand or more. It isn’t well known today because it was essentially eliminated in the Western world.

Sustainable Coastal Fisheries in the Pacific Depends on Improving Sanitation

At the mouth of the Mataniko River, which winds its way through the vibrant coastal port town of Honiara to the sea, is the sprawling informal community of Lord Howe Settlement, which hugs the banks of the estuary and seafront. A walk from the nearby main road to the beach involves a meandering route through narrow alleys between crowded dwellings, homes to about 630 people, which are clustered among the trees and overhang the water.

For the Survival of the Nile and its People

Running through eleven countries for 6,853 kilometres, the Nile is a lifeline for nearly half a billion people. But the river itself has been a source of tension and even conflict for countries and territories that lie along it and there have been rumours of “possible war for the Nile” for years now. While to date there has been no outbreak of irreversible tension, experts say that because of increasing changes in the climate a shared agreement needs to be reached on the redistribution of water soon.

Water: a Private Privilege, not a Community Resource

Water is becoming a private privilege rather than a community resource. It is also one of the world’s most precious resources. As vital to the survival of the human species as the air that we breathe.

The Earthquake in Indonesia: How Collaboration Impacts the Global Water Crisis

On Friday, September 28, the world first heard the devastating news out of Indonesia that a 7.5 magnitude earthquake had struck the island of Sulawesi. The quake caused substantial soil liquefaction — where the earth literally turned to liquid and started to flow — with entire homes sinking into the ground. It also triggered a tsunami, confirmed to be as high as 23 feet, that devastated the coastal areas.

Water Scarcity and Poor Water Management Makes Life Difficult for Egyptians

Local residents in Cairo are becoming concerned and discontent as water scarcity is reaching a critical point in the capital and the rest of the country.

Preservation of the Klamath River – a Life or Death Matter for the Yurok People

Fishermen are scarce in the Klamath River delta, unlike other fishing season, because climate change has driven up water temperatures which kills off the salmon, the flagship species of this region in northern California.

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