World water day focuses on the importance of freshwater and advocates for the its sustainable management and use. Freshwater resources are now finite and are being exploited and degraded at an alarming rate. This year’s theme focuses on water and jobs; better water better jobs, water sources create numerous jobs directly or indirectly globally. Most of our jobs if not all depend directly or indirectly on water availability, and so improvement and better management of water improves living standards.
For the current state of water use and management to improve,it is important to know and understand the principles that guide water use, management and conservation. The Dublin principles relating to water use, management and conservation state:
> Fresh water is a finite and.
vulnerable resource, essential to sustain life, development and. environmental conservation.
Only 1% of water on earth is freshwater and it is importance in the maintenance of terrestrial life, you included.
> Water development and management should be based on a participatory approach involving all users, planners and policy makers at all levels.
This means it is your right to be involved and aware of any development and management plans, as a user if not a stakeholder.
> Women do play a central role in provision, management and safeguarding of water.
Women are water resource managers.
> Water has an economic value in all its competing uses and should be recognized as an economic good.
Further emphasized by this year’s theme, water is central to economic development.
These principles have further led to the Integrated water resource management principles (IWRM) which state:
> Water source and catchment conservation and protection are essential.
> Water allocation should be agreed between stakeholders within a national framework.
> Management of water needs to be taken care of at the lowest appropriate level.
> Capacity building is the key to sustainability.
> Involvement of all stakeholders in water resource management and conservation is required.
> Effecient water use is important and open an important ‘source’ in itself.
> Water should be treated as having and economic and social value.
> Striking a gender balance is essential in management and conservation of water resources.
Some of the water statistics.
Water supply, sanitation and health are also related; inadequate quantities and quality of drinking water has lead to contractingumu of many preventable illnesses. Also inadequate water supply leads to poor sanitation and hence more preventable diseases.
Access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation are basic human rights that everyone should enjoy. It is also your individual responsibility to ensure proper use, management and conservation of water as a resource and all catchment areas.