In summer, extreme heat episodes are becoming more frequent. They start earlier and are more intense. Heat waves add a negative factor to climate change, which becomes a serious global health problem that can accelerate desertification processes and significantly alter the environment. We must mitigate global warming and adapt to living with more heat.
India is the world’s largest groundwater extractor. The country is home to 16% of the world’s population but has only 4% of the planet’s freshwater resources. Many of its aquifers are overexploited. The solutions lie in promoting efficiency in local water management. This will only be possible if communities are involved in solutions and if they acquire knowledge and governance rights. A role model for dryland agriculture.
Concurrent droughts, occurring at the same time in different regions of the world, are the most concerning phenomena for ending hunger. Their effects, combined with economic crises, wars and political instability, are often devastating in humanitarian terms for the poorest countries and have dire consequences on a global scale. Climate science is redoubling its efforts to improve forecasting. But international political action is essential.
Spain is one of the most water-stressed industrialized countries in the world. The country faces the challenge of ensuring long-term water security. Water governance is endemically lagging in promoting investment and public-private partnerships. Citizens need to be part of the solutions, understanding the complexity and cost of the whole water cycle. Spain's actions can be a hopeful reference for the more than 2.5 billion inhabitants of the world's drylands.
“Drylands” occupy approximately 41% of the Earth’s land surface and are home to more than 2.5 billion people. They are the most water-stressed areas globally and contain essential biodiversity for mitigating and adapting to climate change. These territories are the key to curbing desertification and ensuring the maintenance of 50% of livestock and 44% of the world’s food. Understanding the relationship between aridity and water is the first step to achieving it.
We are collaborating to bring water and create a vegetable garden for 1,000 schoolchildren whose families struggle with drought and famine in one of the most impoverished areas of Zimbabwe. These schoolchildren will be adults in 2030. The attainment of the SDGs depends on education and knowledge reaching them all. For this, they need water and knowledge.
Health systems in rural African regions suffer water, sanitation, and hygiene shortcomings. In the Senegalese Sahel, we collaborate in a project to help healthcare centers where Covid-19 has been added to diseases caused by poor water, chronic malnutrition, and the lack of medical assistance. As in the rest of the world, if we attain SDG 6, we will achieve SDG 3: guaranteeing healthy lives and promoting well-being for all ages.
The short Locker, by the Indian Selvaraj, was the winner in the micro-fiction category of the fifth edition of the We Art Water Film Festival. It is a powerful allegory of the situation experienced by many of the more than 1.5 billion people who lack access to water in their homes. The protagonist of the short film lives in a neglected and poor arid zone. Her life and her family depend on having access to the water rations she locks in a drawer.
Sign up to receive news about the water crisis and We Are Water projects.