World Water Day was this week; March 22nd to be exact. It is an important date to mark, as billions of people across the planet do not have access to safe drinking water. Due to climate change, an increase in severe weather has occurred as well. This leads to more flooding, drought, forest degradation, soil erosion, and desertification. A whole host of problems.
All is not lost though. People noticed…
World Water Day 2018
The UN began celebrating World Water Day 25 years ago. People of the world get together to discuss water, its benefits, the problems it faces, and what we can do about them. It is a global issue that affects everyone and everything on the planet.
This year’s theme is “Nature for Water”. UN representatives have gathered in Brazil to discuss the World Water Development Report, but everyone needs to be a part of the solution. What does that look like? How can you make a difference incorporating nature for water? If taking care of nature will help the world’s water, then there is plenty that you can do.
Nature-Based Solutions to Water Challenges
plant more trees – everyone can plant trees, whether it is on your own property, or during a larger planting event with a group. If everyone on earth planted one tree, over 7 billion more trees would be available to reduce our water woes.
- Planting trees reduces soil erosion, removes contaminants from water, reduces flooding & the impact of storms, helps to replenish the water table, and produces more water through transpiration
protect our wetlands
Wetlands are submerged or permeated by water — either permanently or temporarily — and are characterized by plants adapted to saturated soil conditions. Wetlands include fresh and salt water marshes, wooded swamps, bogs, seasonally flooded forest, sloughs — any land area that can keep water long enough to let wetland plants and soils develop.
~ Government of Canada website https://goo.gl/MwFBJR
** as of February 1st, 2018, the Canadian government cancelled the National Wetland Conservation Fund. They will continue to support any remaining projects, but will not fund any new initiatives under the NWCF.**
- Wetlands reduce flooding, filter sediments & contaminants, recharge groundwater, and improve water quality
conservation agriculture (minimize soil disturbance, crop rotation, constant soil coverage)
Conservation agriculture is a revolutionary new farming system that improves food production and food security for smallholder farmers, especially those living in semi-arid regions of the world.
~ Canadian Foodgrains Bank
- Conservation agriculture increases water capture, reduces soil erosion, creates more efficient water usage, and improves soil’s fertility thereby reducing the need for fertilizers
Green infrastructure is defined as the natural vegetative systems and green technologies that collectively provide society with a multitude of economic, environmental and social benefits.
~ Green Infrastructure Ontario Coalition
Examples of green infrastructure include green roofs & walls, gardens, rain barrels, porous pavement, meadows, urban forests, riparian zones, stormwater ponds, bioswales, wetlands, urban agriculture, ravines, parks, and more.
- Green infrastructure improves water quality, reduces erosion, and reduces flooding
So, what can you do?
Plant a tree or two. Grow a garden. Install a rain barrel. Support a farmer who practices conservation agriculture. Make a donation to help preserve and conserve our wetlands.
Share this information to spread the word and protect our water for all!