The catastrophe of the large Murcian lagoon has the components to unleash a perfect environmental storm. Poor management of the land, water irresponsibility and inefficient governance, disconnected from scientific reality are elements of a full manual of bad practices to be avoided.
In many volcanic eruptions it is not only the lava and the flows of gases and debris that are lethal. Water can combine with them, accelerating the force and scope of the destruction, creating lahars. This is a phenomenon that is sometimes difficult to assess and increases the risk of the more than 800 million people living near volcanoes. Climatic change is altering disaster prevention strategies.
Do we eat sustainably? The meaning of this sentence is different for someone living in NYC o in Dhaka, or for a farmer in the French Burgundy, in Anantapur or in the African Sahel. The responses do not allow us to draw global conclusions either. The food challenge faced by mankind is enormous: in addition to the need of water and land there is now the carbon footprint. The climate crisis is present in the diet of those who have the privilege of eating breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. And what about all those who don’t?
The mountains of the southern tip of the South American continent take visitors to a journey back in time: its rivers and streams flow towards the ocean as they did in pre-industrial times, filled with pure water. Science has a privileged real-scale lab in Tierra del Fuego to study a unique ecosystem, in which water is the key factor that stores the ancestral secrets of life on Earth.
10 years after the documentary shot by Isabel Coixet, the Aral Sea continues to be a paradigm of the errors that trigger an environmental disaster with terrible humanitarian consequences. Recovery plans have provided some results, but the full recovery of the large Asian lake is far from being accomplished.
In September 2009, the We Are Water Foundation presented the documentary Aral, the lost sea at the San Sebastian International Film Festival. This project was the result of the Foundation’s proposal to filmmaker Isabel Coixet: to create a documentary that would feature the importance of water in the lives of people, in economy and in the environmental balance. The production by the Spanish film director showed the terrible reality of a hitherto little-known international man-made disaster.
Having safe latrines is essential to support any development strategy. It is vital for the health and to avoid diseases due to fecal contamination. It is the key factor to eradicate open defecation and to provide dignity and safety to women. These are the challenges of SDG 6 highlighted on World Toilet Day. The Foundation’s projects show that every culture, every situation requires specific solutions.
The construction of buildings and cities cannot manage without water. The Smart Water initiative moves forward and expands towards the Smart Building industry: the Smart Water, Smart Building sessions. The We Are Water Foundation gathered leading experts from the world of architecture and design in Mexico City with the aim of presenting and sharing ideas to foster a debate that can be passed on to society as a whole.
Not only meteorological forecasts are necessary. Moving forward in the knowledge of the social and economic factors that shape the human risks in floods is essential to reduce the damage. The climate crisis poses a pressing management challenge.
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