World Water News By
28 Apr 2020 - 07:02 - CAIRO, Egypt - Staff - Water Diplomat
Egypt has officially opened the world’s largest agricultural drainage treatment, recycling and reuse plant in the northeastern city of Ismailia, east of the Suez canal.
The $100 Million USD Al Mahsamma facility, that can process up to 1 million cubic meters per day, will make a significant contribution to conservation of the natural ecology of Al Temsah Lake which has been impacted by wastewater disposal, treating the waste then draining it into the East Sinai canal.
28 Apr 2020 - 07:25 - TEL AVIV, Israel - Staff - Water Diplomat
Israel’s Water Authority has reported that a number of cyber attacks on command and control systems of several wastewater treatment plants, pumping stations and sewage water infrastructure were attempted throughout the country. The 24-25 April action appears to have been coordinated but there was no damage to the water supply.
28 Apr 2020 - 07:06 - BUZAU, Romania - Staff - Water Diplomat
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has approved $21.5 Million USD financing for water and wastewater infrastructure improvement in Buzau County, in southeastern Romania.
28 Apr 2020 - 07:38 - KISUMU CITY, Kenya - Staff - Water Diplomat
Heavy rains that have caused major flooding in and around Lake Victoria over the past two weeks have affected fisheries, restaurants, shops, homes and livelihoods in in Kenya and Uganda, with widespread destruction and displacement. Experts and villagers claim this is the worst flooding since 1963. Local officials in Kenya have appealed to the national government for assistance in an effort to mitigate the problems and to forestall friction among fishing and pastoralist communities.
27 Apr 2020 - 10:39 - WASHINGTON DC, United States - OOSKAnews Correspondent
The United States government has published final rules redefining the scope of US waters that are federally regulated under the Clean Water Act, an action called The Navigable Waters Protection Rule.
The new rule, published on Earth Day (21 April) eliminates clean water protections that have prevented unchecked pollution from entering waterways and drinking water sources for almost 50 years. The redefinition, which removes limits on the amount of pollution that can be dumped into small streams and wetlands, has been defended by the Army Corps of Engineers and the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), these agencies claiming that the new rule maintains federal authority over the nation's waters while preserving the states' primary authority over land and water resources.
27 Apr 2020 - 09:30 - SYDNEY - Local Press Report
Large amounts of water available for irrigation contradict claims from NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro that farmers had been sacrificed for the environmental objectives of the "failed" Murray Darl
27 Apr 2020 - 09:32 - NEW HAVEN CT - Local Press Report
The Delaware River, a major source of drinking water for Philadelphia, is facing an emerging threat as rising seas push saltwater farther upstream.
27 Apr 2020 - 09:33 - DHAKA - Local Press Report
In spring of 2019, researchers set out to investigate what chemicals could be found in the waters of Bangladesh.
27 Apr 2020 - 09:29 - WASHINGTON DC - Local Press Report
A new U.S. Supreme Court ruling puts groundwater science at the center of decisions about how to regulate water pollution.
25 Apr 2020 - 10:08 - BILLINGS MT, United States - Staff - Water Diplomat
A federal judge in the US state of Montana has ruled that the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) violated the law when it approved an important water-crossing permit for the contentious Keystone XL tar sands pipeline system which runs from the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin in Alberta, Canada to refineries, oil tank farms and pipeline distribution systems in central and southern US states.
25 Apr 2020 - 10:36 - DHAKA, Bangladesh - Staff - Water Diplomat
Bangladesh capital city Dhaka's water and sewage system is to benefit from development bank and government investment to improve supply and sanitation for an underserved, fast growing poulation.
22 Apr 2020 - 12:56 - EDINBURGH, Scotland - Staff - Water Diplomat
OOSKAnews Voices is a series of guest columns written by senior participants in different parts of the international water community. In this article, Adrian Sym, Chief Executive of the pioneering Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) describes, with focus on the agri-export sector in Peru's Ica Valley, how a robust and credible standard for water sustainability is a framework behind which diverse stakeholders can unite and, with strong leadership, can help to plot a pathway through complex and contentious situations.Since joining AWS in 2011, Adrian has overseen the development of the Alliance into the a truly global network that ignites and nurtures leadership in credible water stewardship. Adrian leads a globally-dispersed team of experts who support this work and ensure that lessons from local contexts are shared across the network, inform the ongoing development of the AWS Standard, and inspire responsible stewardship of our freshwater resources. A development and sustainability professional, Adrian has extensive international experience ranging from Fairtrade International in Germany to grassroots NGOs in Nepal and Bangladesh. His diverse experience, together with his academic background (Masters in International Policy and Diplomacy), has helped to shape Adrian’s view on sustainable development, believing that this can only be achieved through relationships built on trust and respect amongst and between stakeholder groups.
José Luis Camino runs Sun Fruits Export, a successful agro-exporting business in Ica Valley, Peru. As a major grower of table grapes, tangerines, avocados and blueberries, José Luis knows that year-round sunshine and favourable soil conditions are vital, but the most precious resource of all is the water that flows from the Andes Mountains into the Ica river and the region’s groundwater reserves.José Luis’s business, and with it the employment of up to 2,000 people, depend on the sustainable management of Ica’s scarce water resources. The story of Sun Fruits is typical of many companies in Ica, fuelled by the ever-increasing demand for high-value export crops in Europe, North America and Asia. Data from Ica paints a picture of relative prosperity, compared to neighbouring regions of Peru, however this prosperity comes at a cost. There are long-standing concerns about groundwater levels and negative impacts on the upstream region of Huancavelica resulting from surface water transfers.In 2010, Progressio published “Drop by drop: Understanding the impacts of the UK’s water footprint through a case study of Peruvian asparagus”, a report that was instrumental in capturing the attention of the mainstream media in Europe and raising questions about embedded water in international value chains. Further studies have added to this, notably Swedwatch which published “To the Last Drop: Water and human rights impacts of the agro export industry in Ica, Peru: the responsibility of buyers” in late 2018.In Ica, as in many other locations worldwide, it is easy for an overall negative picture to obscure the positive action that many individuals and groups are taking to ensure the Valley’s sustainable future. General criticism tends to put everyone on the back foot, leaving little space for constructive and collaborative improvement.
As a globally consistent and stakeholder-endorsed framework, the AWS Standard helps to plot a pathway through such complex situations. Certification to the AWS Standard provides recognition for sites whose stewardship is "best in class".In December 2019, I had the opportunity to see first-hand how the Standard is helping to reconcile different interests in Ica. In contentious settings, the risk of taking positive action that involves greater transparency, and therefore potential criticism, can be very high. Taking the first step takes courage. It was inspiring to see the leadership of José Luis Camino and five other major growers in the region who have committed to seek AWS certification. Even in a location as apparently homogeneous as Ica, the actions adopted by different growers reflect their specific relationship with water. Sun Fruits’ water stewardship activities has a strong focus on access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) for workers and local communities, building on their experiences in refurbishing a government-run wastewater treatment plant (pictured).By contrast, Manuel Yzaga, CEO of Vanguard Peru, focuses on utilizing technology and data to improve water use on his Challapampa farm, and promoting all actors in Ica to share data, with the vision of achieving better integrated water management. Sun Fruits and Vanguard are improving their farms’ water use while, more importantly, bringing others with them by demonstrating that water stewardship makes good business sense and is vital for the prosperity of communities in a region as water stressed as Ica. This leadership and commitment to transparency and collective action has been brought into sharp relief by the way in which these and other AWS members have responded to community needs during the current COVID-19 pandemic.The AWS Standard lends itself well to supporting collective action. Growers in Ica are sharing their commitment with peers, both local and further afield. This is complemented by strong endorsement by local agencies of a stewardship approach, including the JUSAVI, the Ica Groundwater Board, the Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and AGAP, the Peruvian Association of Agricultural Producers.
This type of constructive engagement is precisely the kind recommended by Swedwatch. It builds the trust and confidence needed to ignite local leadership and to break the negative cycle of blame. In a location that is so connected to international value chains, constructive engagement must also extend to international stakeholders.
AWS is engaging with supermarkets, importers, investors and NGOs to ensure their support for the work on the ground in Ica, and other sourcing hotspots in Latin America and beyond. Just as trust and confidence are needed locally, they are also essential for ensuring international stakeholders understand how they can best support water stewardship efforts. Shared learning helps to expand the scope of international interest and increase positive local impacts.
Water stewardship is no panacea, and the sustainability of water for the agri-export sector in Ica will need constant attention. But the experiences in Ica and elsewhere show that a robust and credible standard is a framework behind which diverse stakeholders can unite and, with strong leadership, can help to plot a pathway through complex and contentious situations.
The six growers in Ica who have publicly committed to pursue AWS certification are: Agrícola Chapi, Agrícola Valle del Sol S.A.C., Campos del Sur, Safco Perú, Sun Fruits Export, y Vanguard Perú.
AWS would like to acknowledge our partners who are supporting work in Latin America: Edeka, WWF-Germany, DEG (Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH) and FMO (Netherlands Development Finance Company).
The AWS International Water Stewardship Standard (AWS Standard) is a globally applicable framework for major water users to understand their water use and impacts, and to work collaboratively and transparently for sustainable water management within a catchment context. The Standard is intended to drive social, environmental and economic benefits at the scale of a catchment.
21 Apr 2020 - 11:12 - Washington DC, United States - OOSKAnews Correspondent
Wednesday this week marks the fiftieth Earth Day, the largest secular holiday in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year on 22 April to demonstrate support for environmental protection.
On Earth Day 2016, the landmark Paris Agreement was signed, bringing into force the historic draft climate protection treaty adopted by consensus of the 195 nations present at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. 2020's UN Climate Conference (COP26), scheduled for Glasgow, Scotland in November, has been deferred because of the global coronavirus pandemic.
This Unusual Year
Around 100 of the world’s key experts are meeting “virtually” this week to fast forward creative solutions needed to build a better future and avert the biggest crisis facing humanity in an event organised by social network “We Don’t Have Time” in collaboration with lead partners "Exponential Roadmap" and "Earth Day Network", which is being live streamed as part of the fiftieth anniversary events. Topics to be addressed include climate finance, food and agriculture, the circular economy and consumption, big ideas and local government.
21 Apr 2020 - 11:45 - KIGALI - Local Press Report
A group of young people in Rwanda have been writing and producing a series of radio dramas to teach listeners about the vital role hand-washing and sanitation play in preventing the spread of disea
21 Apr 2020 - 11:48 - PARIS - Local Press Report
The Mairie of Paris has assured residents that “there is no risk from tap water”, after traces of coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 - which causes Covid-19 - were found in the capital’s non-potable water sour
21 Apr 2020 - 11:52 - KINSHASA - Local Press Report
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is Africa’s most water-rich country, yet many of its people have no safe access to this precious resource.
21 Apr 2020 - 11:40 - RIO DE JANEIRO - Local Press Report
Long-neglected water and sewerage issues in Brazil’s favelas have gained new attention amid the global Covid-19 crisis.
21 Apr 2020 - 11:41 - BRUSSELS - Local Press Report
The European Commission has signed the grant agreement for WATER MINING, a 17 million euro project aimed at demonstrating innovative water resource solutions.
21 Apr 2020 - 11:47 - BANGKOK - Local Press Report
Thailand on Friday called for a joint study with China and neighboring countries to determine what caused a devastating drought in the Lower Mekong Basin last year, after a U.S.-funded report indic
21 Apr 2020 - 11:50 - TEHRAN - Local Press Report
The European Union (EU) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) have announced their €10- million support for the rehabilitation of Hamoun international wetlands, Ahmad Lahijanzadeh, depu