The degradation of the Mithi River has become an icon of water pollution, a definite and poignant image of the worst end for waste caused by human activity, especially that of the poorest neighborhoods. The micro documentary Plastic River, finalist of the We Are Water Film Festival 5, covers the best images of this indecency. Finding out the reasons for this disaster is as important as learning from the efforts made to solve it.
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 “boat people” who live on board precarious vessels on Lake Manchar are discouraged about their future. Water pollution and salinization has almost stopped providing them with fish, forcing them to migrate to the mainland or towards the sea. The Floating Family, finalist in the micro-documentary category at the We Art Water Film Festival 5, recounts the precarious situation of the last fishermen who survive in Pakistan’s largest lake.
India is experiencing the worst wave of infections and deaths the world has seen since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. The healthcare chaos overlaps poor medical coverage and the endemic problems of lack of access to water and sanitation in the marginal slums and in the neglected rural world. The solution of the pandemic in India is key for the entire world.
Salinization due to climate change and the reduction of sediments affect most deltas worldwide. The unsustainable management of land and water aggravates the decline of ecosystems and causes situations that must be urgently reverted. In the Mekong Delta, farmers try to survive in spite of these problems. Their daily fight has inspired the short film The Thirst for Freshwater, finalist in the micro-documentary category at the We Art Water Film Festival 5.
The acceptance of sustainability as an economic asset is spreading among companies. It transforms the concept of social responsibility and brings economy closer to citizens. Water use efficiency is increasingly present in sustainable business growth strategies and is critical to attain the SDGs.
Will algorithms and big data be able to control the 42,000 km3of usable fresh water all around the world? Will they be able to monitor its efficient use worldwide? Will they guarantee universal access to water? Will they create inequalities in decision-making to face the climate crisis? These are not science-fiction questions; in the smart world that is already underway, they point towards a future that is the goal of the current technological development based on big data and artificial intelligence.
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