Held annually on the 22nd March, World Water Day is an official United Nations event, coordinated by UN Water in collaboration with governments and partners across the world. With the objective of raising awareness about the global water crisis, this year’s day is all about water and climate change and how the two are inextricably linked.
Central to this year’s theme is exploring how:
- Adapting to the water effects of climate change will protect health and save lives.
- Using water more efficiently will reduce greenhouse gases.
- We cannot afford to wait.
- Everyone has a role to play.
Extreme weather events, caused by climate change, are making fresh water sources more scarce, more unpredictable, more polluted, or all three. With the UN citing climate delay as almost as dangerous as climate denial, the body is urging very country in the world to step up and work more quickly to tackle the crisis.
It should be no surprise that we need fresh water to survive, as do all the systems we rely on: sanitation, healthcare, education, business and industry. World Water Day helps to highlight the grave importance of safe and sustainable water management, and how it is implemented across all boarders.
In addition UN Water is keen to point out that fighting climate change will open up vast opportunities for the economy in many areas. ‘We need to embrace circular production systems and use water much more efficiently. As the global population grows, so does the demand for water, which depletes natural resources and damages the environment in many places. Solutions include protecting carbon sinks such as oceans and wetlands, adopting climate-smart agricultural techniques, and increasing the safe reuse of wastewater.’
‘Water is our most precious resource – we must use it more responsibly. We must balance all of society’s water needs while ensuring the poorest people don’t get left behind.’
And the good news is that you can do your bit too by not wasting water. There’s much you can do, including:
- Taking a short shower, rather than a bath.
- Turning off taps in-between rinsing your toothbrush when brushing your teeth.
- Turning taps off tightly, to ensure they are not left dripping.
- Only using electrical appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines when full. While modern high-end washing machines calculate the load and use water accordingly, the majority of washing machines and nearly all dishwashers will use the same amount of water even when the machine is half-empty.
- Investing in rainwater butts to catch rainwater that can be used to fill fishponds and water the garden.
- Swapping old and inefficient appliances with new water and energy efficient products. This can include aerated taps and showerheads, just as much as high-end washing machines and dishwashers.
- Asking your professional plumber to do a system health check. This will ensure your system is working as effectively and efficiently as possible. They can also suggest areas where water saving technology can make a real difference to your water usage and bills.
- Fixing any dripping taps or plumbing leaks.
If you want to go a step further, you can log your climate actions on the United Nation’s Act Now website, where you can also find further easy lifestyle changes that will help save the planet.
Find out more on World Water Day by visiting www.unwater.org