Asia Pacific Alliance – Sri Lanka

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World Water Day 2024: Water for Peace

World Water Day 2024: Water for Peace

Mar 22, 2024

Today, we commemorate World Water Day, a global observance that underscores the critical role of water in our lives. This year’s theme, “Water for Peace,” invites us to reflect on the multifaceted relationship between water and the planet’s well-being. Whether in times of conflict or collaboration, water remains a precious resource that demands our attention.

As the world’s population continues to grow and climate change intensifies, water scarcity emerges large on the global stage. The delicate balance between communities, countries, and ecosystems depends on fair and sustainable water use.

Let’s explore some eye-opening statistics that underscore the impact of water scarcity on biodiversity:

Transboundary Dependence: Over 3 billion people worldwide rely on water that crosses national borders. Yet, only 24 countries have cooperation agreements for their shared water resources, accounting for nearly 60% of the world’s freshwater.

Lack of Access: 2.1 billion people lack access to safely managed drinking water. Clean water is a basic human right, yet millions continue to face water-related challenges.

Water-Related Disasters: Water-related disasters have dominated the list of global calamities over the past 50 years, constituting 70% of all deaths related to natural disasters. Floods, droughts, and extreme weather events take a heavy toll on communities and ecosystems alike.

Untreated Wastewater: Despite technological advancements, 80% of global wastewater remains inadequately treated.

Sources: WEF, UN, OECD

A-PAD SL’s Vital Initiative – Rainwater Harvesting in Sri Lanka

Considering the difficulty in acquiring water by other means, the Asia-Pacific Alliance for Disaster Management Sri Lanka (A-PAD SL) has led multiple projects to secure water in the Northern District of Sri Lanka. One such initiative focuses on effective rainwater harvesting systems in the Northern District of Sri Lanka. These systems were installed through a collaborative effort involving private sector partners, including A-PAD Japan and the Civic Force of Japan

The Northern District of Sri Lanka faces prolonged aridity, resulting in limited water availability. Access to water is a challenge, and the possibility of storing water when provided is crucial. Although the rainwater harvesting systems were initially installed in selected houses, their impact extended beyond individual households. Community sharing played a vital role, and beneficiaries demonstrated the effectiveness of the tanks provided for harvesting.

In a region where every drop counts, these rainwater harvesting systems have become a lifeline. They represent the spirit of cooperation, sustainability, and resilience values that resonate on this World Water Day.

As we celebrate water’s role in fostering peace and harmony, let us renew our commitment to safeguarding this precious resource.