The World Water Day, commemorated on March 22nd since 1993, celebrates the various ways in which water benefits our lives and highlights the importance of water and sanitation. The World Water Day 2022 is dedicated on groundwater with the theme “Making the invisible visible”.
2022: The Groundwater Year
This year, the protagonist of World Water Day is groundwater. According to the United Nations, Groundwater is water that is found underground in aquifers, geological formations of rock and sand that hold substantial quantities of water. Did you now that almost all of the liquid freshwater found is groundwater? In fact, groundwater is recharged from the rain or snow falls and feeds lakes and rivers. The existence of groundwater is essential for the preservation of life, as it sustains ecosystems. Many areas around the world are dependent on groundwater since it is used for food purposes, sanitation or even drinking. Nonetheless, we should use groundwater sparingly in order to avoid any water stress related issues, especially since the pandemic has already caused a serious health and economic crisis around the globe. According to the United Nation’s Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, 90% of all natural disasters are water-related. In addition, the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF point out that more than 2 billion people lack access to safe water services, while around 4.5 billion people lack access to safely managed sanitation services.
United Nations: Water for Sustainable Development
Access to clean water is declared as a basic human right. However, in the last years especially due to phenomena such as population increase, the developing global economy and climate change, issues related to water challenges needed to be further addressed. In order to tackle future water-related challenges, the United Nations have declared 2018-2028 as the International Decade for Action “Water for Sustainable Development”. The main objectives of the decade focus on the management of water resources through the implementation of various projects and programmes, with the goal to inspire actions towards Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6: Water and sanitation for all by 2030. The entire initiative aims to increase awareness and stress out the importance of collaboration and knowledge exchange among various stakeholders. Water is not only a key indicator of economic and social development, but also of security and peace, based on its availability.
The United Nations World Water Day 2022 campaign aims to promote the following core messages:
- Groundwater might be invisible, but its impact is visible. Therefore, it should not be neglected.
- Groundwater can be severely affected from what we do on the surface. Managing water in an efficient way and using harmless products on the soil is crucial.
- Measuring, analysing and monitoring groundwater is important for the future.
- Groundwater is passing borders. As a result, proper management of groundwater resources and collaboration between countries is essential.
- Groundwater is affected by climate change. Our duty is to protect and preserve it by taking into consideration both the needs of the planet and people.
Let us honor and respect the groundwater this year since it is an invisible resource that has a tangible impact on human lives. It is now time for groundwater to be on the spotlight. Make every water drop count!
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Written by Ioanna Mavridou
Ioanna holds a Bachelor’s degree in Translation from the Ionian University in Corfu, working with legal, medical and technical translation. A language and communications enthusiast, she is currently completing her Master’s in Communication from Gothenburg University in Sweden and is also studying towards a Social Media & Digital Marketing certification. She is a Communications Trainee at the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament.