They treat wastewater with solar energy, capture CO2 and transform pollutants into valuable compounds. Moreover, they reproduce on their own and can collaborate in water disinfection. They are microalgae, plants we still know very little about, which can surely provide many benefits to sustainable sanitation without technological gaps.
The more we know about environmental problems, the more global solutions become. The water footprint of economic activity is closely linked to the carbon footprint, and both have an impact on the ecological footprint. The goal of reducing greenhouse gases should take hydric stress into consideration in a global approach that is essential to achieve efficiency and justice.
Migration due to poverty, violence and neglect has led to the overcrowding of hundreds of thousands of people within a few kilometers of the center of Nairobi, Kenya’s capital. The causes of the creation of slums follow a universal pattern that show us where to find the shortcomings of the universal justice we wish to create. The short filmRaindrops, by Stephen Okoth, finalist of the We Art Water Film Festival 5, recreates a real common story in Kibera and in all marginal neighborhoods around the world.
The listing of water rights in California on the Wall Street stock exchange has raised serious issues due to the negative influence it might have on the protection of the human right to water. It is the response of the free market to a scarce good that is subject to the ups and downs in availability and prices mainly due to the climate crisis and the increase in demand. It is a factor that opens the perspective to financial speculation and this must be avoided.
Nature is our most important asset. Not only is it the base of our economy, it is also an essential part of ourselves. If it gets sick, we all get sick. And its health has significantly deteriorated in the past few decades without traditional economy taking this into account. It is urgent to move forward so that economic advances include nature in the definition of wealth and water is a good indicator. Revising the concept of GDP is a first step.
Floods caused by violent rainfall frequently exceed the capacity of the sewage system and spill all kinds of pollutants into rivers and seas. Adapting urban sanitation systems to these phenomena is vital for the health and preservation of the environment. It is one of the challenges of the smart age in the face of an increasingly urban future. Investments must reach all for results to be sustainable.
Crisis upon crisis. The Covid-19 pandemic has burst into a planet threatened by climate change and environmental degradation. On World Environment Day, mankind must return to action, aware that the fight to save the natural environment from degradation must continue. Effective communication is essential to modify behaviors and take advantage of the perception change of the territory we have had during the confinement.
The health emergency poses new challenges to urban planning. The criteria of sustainability are broadened with those of health, and the concept of healthy city radically changes if extreme poverty is not taken into account. The awareness that individual health is synonymous with collective health is one of the lessons of Covid-19 that we should not miss.
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