As a PhD researcher in water resources from a developing country, I wish to echo what Carlos Teodoro has mentioned about legislation. Much as he mentioned it in relation to setting limits on effluent standards, I wish to further mention in developing countries even the legislation is not made aware to the general public and especially resource users and those who generate wastes. Researching on rural stakeholder inclusion in water policy/legislation and its impacts on the overall water resources, management it is appalling to note how unaware these rural stakeholders/communities are water regulatory frameworks. While we are fighting contamination from industries in developed world, it is also important to know that water security at catchment level in developing countries is still at a threat by those surrounding the catchments. It is encouraging to note how much research has been done in the area of community based natural resources management. But little of the recommendations therein is implemented on the ground!
How can governments really implement what is stipulated in their policy? with all the advantages it would bring in engaging rural communities in natural resources management, why are we making progress in protecting deforestation, ensure good rural agricultural practices which would significantly reduce soil erosion? I believe an informed and comprehensively engaged community (following good stakeholder analysis in engagement) would result to health ecosystems and hence secured water resources.
3 years 4 months
Artur, I agree with you. "Increasing people demanding water requires that more long-term investments must be applied to protect and restore the water source regions, which surround our big cities". On the same turning the focus to developing countries, my experience has been the reluctance of our governments (mostly politicians) to invest in long-term projects. I mean a lot more politicians are interested in short-term projects of which results can show in order to buy an extra vote into their ballot box. How do we really attract the interests of politicians who may ultimately be responsible for decision-making? For sometimes despite seeing the water shortages problems (in quality and quantity) they still do not want to invest! And usually, I see that water sources are generally left out in key discussion rooms. What we have cared so much is the water we see at the tap instead.
3 years 4 months
In deed you are right a comprehensive legislation is good. I think one of the best inclusions in the new legislation has been the establishment of independent water institutions looking at the regulations of water resources. South Africa had an advantage to re-work on their water legislation after apartheid. Other countries may have similar institutional frameworks includes Kenya and Zimbabwe.
I had a privilege in my country, Malawi to be among such kind of discussions to reform the water legislation. I have also worked worked in neighboring Zambia on a similar project funded by GIZ. However, what I have observed and read in all these countries including South Africa has been lack of wider implementation of such well-thought legislation. I thus agree it would be a good idea to have a panel of discussion on this, share best practices etc.
3 years 3 months
3 years 3 months
Thanks a lot for list of topics. If there was time, all could be discussed or indeed find a way to combine some. Here are my 3 choices.
1. The role of information, communication, and funding in ecosystems and water conservation
2. Economics incentives and legislation for water and ecosystem conservation
3. Integrated assessments of the cumulative impacts of surface and groundwater use