In late August, USAID launched Safeguarding the World’s Water, the 2011 report on its FY 2010 Water Sector activities around the globe. The report offers detailed information about the agency’s investments and partnerships. In 2010, USAID invested $642.2 million in water-related activities, with most going to Asia, sub Saharan Africa, and the Middle East. Most investments were in the WSSH sector, altogether reaching $520.4 million. More than 2.8 million people were provided with improved drinking water supply and 2.9 million people with improved access to sanitation facilities. Nearly 12 billion liters of drinking water were purified using point-of-use treatment products, of which more than 10 billion liters went to residents of African countries.
Initiative for Conservation in the Andean Amazon (ICAA), USAID’s biodiversity conservation program, has been working in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru to implement conservation programs along the Amazon River. A book on the program’s efforts and achievements features stunning images from the Amazon by photographer Thomas Müller. Interviews and stories from those impacted by the program are also included in the text. The first phase of ICAA recently ended and the second phase (2011-2016) is currently underway. It will support landscape planning, sustainable development, environmental governance, capacity building, climate change mitigation, and ecosystem protection in the four countries.
Columbia Water Center’s blog from The Earth Institute reports on water-related issues around the globe. A main focus is to bring attention to water scarcity and poor water management, mainly diminished levels of fresh water in the agricultural sector. Major themes of the blog include groundwater management, climate change, global warming, sustainable development, and water conservation.
Water for People, a global NGO, believes everyone should have access to sanitation and safe drinking water every day. The organization helps bring together communities and governments to establish creative, collaborative solutions that allow people to build and maintain their own reliable safe water systems in numerous countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Their goal is to provide lasting programs for entire districts by examining problems and creating sustainable solutions. By installing hand pumps, digging new wells, repairing broken water pipelines, and educating communities on hygiene, Water for People is making a difference in water sustainability in developing countries.
Voice of Africa’s short video puts a face on the drought in the Horn of Africa with interviews from those being hit the hardest. Consulting relief experts say long-term solutions are needed to address underlying problems with African agriculture. Feed the Future, a program launched by the U.S. in June 2011, aims at fighting food insecurities in the eastern Horn of Africa and will increase resilience among vulnerable populations by increasing the accessibility to staple foods, reducing trade and transport barriers, harnessing science and technology to assist populations in adapting to increasingly erratic weather patterns, and supporting efforts to reduce marginalization of certain populations.
In this animated film from the Surfrider foundation, the water cycle and how it has been altered over time is featured. Engaging and humorous at times, the video takes a very serious subject and breaks it down for the viewer: water management and usage must change or water scarcity will grow. By using the familiar “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” in regards to trash, the film encourages people to apply the three R’s to all of our most precious resource, water.
Last updated: September 25, 2013