Water PNG commemorates World Water Day

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Water PNG highlights the importance of water and its aims to ensure everyone has access to water and sanitation. WATER is essential for life on Planet Earth. Water is essential for human health and well-being, economic and social development, the production of food, energy and other essentials of life. In fact, our world cannot exist without water.

In PNG, due to the abundance of water in our valleys and forests, we take the availability of water for granted. The world we live in however is a small place and our actions have an impact on the world. Pollution and global warming are impacting natural water sources and contributing to many health issues worldwide.

According to the United Nations (www.un.org): 

  • 1.4 million people die annually, and 74 million people will have their lives shortened by diseases related to poor water,  sanitation and hygiene;
  • 2 billion people lack safe drinking water; and
  • Almost half of the global population (3.6 billion people) lack safe sanitation.

On March 22 every year, Water Day is celebrated around the world, and it’s no different here in Papua New Guinea. For this year’s event, the theme is: ‘Accelerating Change’.

In Water PNG’s efforts to solve the water and sanitation problems, they have started initiatives in their management and operations to ensure they comply with the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 of giving everyone access to water and sanitation by 2030.

The process has not been easy, but thanks to the effort of their skilled local staff and the Government level assistance from the Marape-Rosso Government, Water PNG is putting a lot of effort into meeting the goal.

Due to increase in population and industry, the demand for water is ever increasing.

Thus, water is not as abundant as we have come to assume. The United Nations World Water Day falls on March 22 annually, since 1993.

World Water Day raises awareness and educates the public on this very critical resource.

World Water Day reminds us to take action in the way we use, consume and manage water in our lives. This year’s theme is “Accelerating Change” to address the water crisis in many parts of the world. PNG is not spared from this crisis.

In cities like Port Moresby, Lae and Mt Hagen, there remains a demand gap due to population growth and business activities.

Planning and investments in infrastructure expansion has lagged growth hence existing systems capacity levels struggle to meet the demands posed by rapid population growth and development.

Deforestation is happening to make space for gardens and timbers for sale. When trees are cut down, it reduces the amount of water available during dry seasons, thus, affecting precipitation negatively. Climate related phenomena such as El Nino, droughts pose risks on water resources that need to be planned for a mitigated to safeguard communities.