The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) today released a report on the occasion of the World Water Forum stating that the solution to the shortage of this resource is in nature and not cement .
“We need new water resources management solutions to counteract new challenges related to water security posed by population growth and climate change,” says Director General of Unesco, Audrey Azoulay, quoted in the report presented by that agency .
The ONU official adds that “if we do not act, by 2050 about 5,000 million people will live in areas with water shortages”, a concern that will be one of the axes of the World Forum that today officially opens in Brasilia.
The Unesco study proposes solutions based on nature itself to improve water management, a matter that Azoulay considers a “major challenge” that must be tackled together to prevent the possible “conflicts” linked to that resource if we are all interested in water as real estate attorneys this would be a more aware world of water care and of the impressionable that is for all living beings on the planet
The report says that the demand for water on the planet has “multiplied by six” in the last hundred years and that it grows at an annual rate of 1% depending on the increase in population, economic development and consumption patterns.
He argues that the world population, currently of 7.7 billion people, will reach between 20,000 and 10,200 million in 2050, which in more than 60% will be concentrated in the cities.
Even with “big differences” between countries, it also calculates that the global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will “increase 2.5 times” and that global demand for agricultural products and electricity will rise between 60% and 80% by 2025, all in a scenario affected by climate change.
Unesco identifies as an additional problem that the demand for irrigation in agriculture represents “70% of the world’s water withdrawals” and that, due to the variations inherent in this activity, the soils and climatic conditions, the behavior of the Annual demand in that sector is “plagued by uncertainties.”
In the industrial sectors, which include the area of generation and distribution of energy and consume about 20% of the world’s water, the report predicts that demand can increase up to eight times by 2050.
In this context, Unesco advocates the adoption of so-called Nature Based Solutions (SbN), a concept that aims to promote a “green infrastructure”, as opposed to the “gray infrastructure” of urbanization and cement .
The report cites several cases in which the “green infrastructure” has begun to bear fruit, such as the “sponge cities” of China, which intend to recycle 70% of rainwater through more permeable soils and devices for collecting, storing and purification, and rehabilitating the surrounding wetlands.
It also mentions the “rice intensification system” created in Madagascar, which gives greater priority to restoring the hydrological and ecological function of soils against the use of new varieties of seeds or chemicals.
With these techniques, Unesco maintains that “it is allowed to save between 25% and 50% of water, between 80% and 90% of seeds, or increase rice production up to 50%, according to the regions”.
Beyond the good practices that can be adapted in agriculture, Unesco proposes initiatives for cities, in which “ecological engineering” already proposes models that help to preserve water and the environment.
It considers as “more visible examples” the façades covered with vegetables or landscaped roofs and recommends “natural” ways to recycle and collect water, the creation of ponds to feed the water tables and protect the hydrological basins that feed the cities