World Water Day 2017
World Water Day began back in 1993. It is now an annual event that is recognised on the 22nd March by all UN member states. It was brought about at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro. The UN General Assembly that a designated day should be made to celebrate freshwater. World Water Day promotes awareness and is an opportunity to learn more about water related issues, after all water is vital to every single living thing on the planet.
Why is water awareness so important?
Water covers 71% of the earth’s surface, and is vital to all known forms of life on the planet, only 1% of which is suitable for drinking. It is a fact that 748 million people around the world still do not have access to freshwater and do not have an adequate water source for drinking and sanitation. Water related illnesses kill over 315,000 children every year; that is almost 900 children a day! Water should never be taken for granted. Water scarcity is a growing problem in communities in third world countries. Here, finding a reliable source of safe water is not easy. Ideally water should be accessible to everyone, everywhere. Having a special day to highlight this is essential to educate us that water should be conserved and not wasted. Being aware will make us more mindful on how we use our water. Only use what is needed and collecting rainwater is just a couple of things we can do in our everyday lives, that we make a big difference.
This year’s World Water Day theme
Each year world water day will highlight a certain aspect regarding the importance of freshwater. This year “water and wastewater” are the theme of the celebrations. Focusing on the significance of water waste management to demonstrate its importance as a valuable sustainable water source.
What can I do?
As world water day approaches, think about how much water you really waste. There are lots of ways to save water.
- Install a water meter, so that you can see exactly how much water you are using.
- Collect rainwater in a water butt; use it for watering your plants or washing your car.
- Having a shower instead of a bath will save lots of water. The average shower pumps out 2.5 gallons of water per minute, so a 10 minute shower will use around 25 gallons of water. Most bath tubs hold 45 gallons of water, so you will be using almost double the amount of water if you chose to have a soak in the bath.
- Don’t overfill your kettle; only boil up what you need.
- Make sure that your dishwasher and washing machine are full before using them.
- If you have taps that leak, fix them. It’s surprising how much water is wasted that way. It’s quite easy to fill a washing up bowl up overnight from a leaky tap.