Pollution on World Water Day: a day to make the world aware

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Opening a tap to shower, cook or simply satiate our thirst is such an every-day action and so lacking in difficulty that we all do it without thinking. But now, let’s think about it. Very rarely are we aware of the great privilege that is the easy availability of such a valuable resource.

This lack of awareness has led to a production and consumption model characterised by very severe overexploitation of natural resources. We are also responsible for the pollution of elements so essential to our existence, such as rivers and aquifers. Our time on the planet has brought with it deterioration of everything we have used thus far without any type of limitation.

However, feeding oneself, producing or, ultimately, surviving, are tasks that share the same need, which is, in turn, the need of all inhabitants of the plant: water. Preservation of water resources is an inevitable need for human beings. Feeding oneself, producing or, ultimately, surviving, are tasks that share the same need, which is, in turn, the need of all inhabitants of the plant: the use of water resources. Being conscious of that is the first step. Taking measures to address the issue is our only chance for the future.

In recent years, international institutions have been emphasising the central role this issue must have in the global agenda. Within the framework of the SDG, Goal 6 is to “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”. Moreover, there are numerous initiatives aimed at promoting participation in and awareness of this goal on an individual level. An outstanding example of the latest actions in this area was the presentation of a ground-breaking, web-based platform by UN Environment, Google and the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre. This platform fuses big data and environmental science to monitor global freshwater ecosystems. Over 11 million images and hundreds of datasets will be freely accessible to anyone with an internet connection. This platform will undoubtedly be a key source of information for the purpose of meeting the SDGs by 2030.

But the gravity of the problem requires even greater commitment. The work being undertaken by global institutions will only be of use when it resonates in more local spheres. It is for this reason that there are an increasing number of different private actions from the more individual perspective to publicise the environmental problem. Horizon 2030 addresses this problem. Echoing the line of action set out by the European Commission in its Horizon 2020 sustainable development strategy and the United Nations 2030 Agenda, it has emerged as a portal committed to campaigning for environmental awareness. With this objective in mind, numerous news items, strategies and opinion articles can be found, all focusing on the need to make development compatible with sustainability. I.e., the urgent need to lead our lives in a way that makes it possible for our descendants to lead theirs in the future.

World Water Day will take place on March 22 and provides the perfect excuse for all of us to begin to involve ourselves more in building a sustainable future. You can find more relevant information through the link on World Water Day and on the very serious implications if we continue to pollute as we have done to date. It is the perfect time for us to take responsibility for our actions, in the awareness that environmental deterioration has been the result of these actions. Unless we come to terms with our past, we will reduce our future possibilities to the minimum. Unless we achieve a sustainable economic development model, we will be responsible for our extinction as a species.

It is, therefore, the time for all of us to help in the quest for solutions. Designing a better future is possible and we all can and must participate directly in the process.