World Water Day — 22nd March 2022
When is World Water Day 2022?
World water day is held every year on March 22, to highlight the significance of water.
The theme for World Water Day 2022
This year, the focus is on groundwater, an unseen resource with a visible influence everywhere. Groundwater is found underground in aquifers, which are geological formations of rocks, sands, and gravel that contain large amounts of water. Groundwater supplies springs, rivers, lakes, wetlands, and seeping into the seas. Groundwater is mostly replenished by rain and snowfall penetrating the earth. Pumps and wells can bring groundwater to the surface.
Without groundwater, there would be no life. The majority of the world’s dry regions depends exclusively on groundwater. Groundwater provides a significant amount of the water used for drinking, sanitation, food production, and industrial operations. It is also vital to the good operation of ecosystems such as wetlands and rivers.
We must preserve it from overexploitation – extracting more water than is replenished by rain and snow and the pollution that already afflicts them, since this can lead to resource depletion, additional processing expenses, and, in certain cases, blocking their usage.
Exploring, preserving, and utilizing groundwater sustainably will be critical to surviving and adapting to climate change and satisfying the requirements of a growing population.
World Water Day
On March 22, we celebrate world water day to highlight the importance of the earth’s most critical resource. World water day aims to ensure safe water supplies for all of the world’s people. It serves as a reminder that billions of people live in poverty due to a lack of access to drinking safe water. As a human, it is our responsibility to protect our water while also ensuring access to those who use it.
As many diverse groups are disregarded when it comes to giving access to the earth’s most valuable resource, the United Nations has said that “water services must satisfy the requirements of disadvantaged groups, and their views must be heard in decision-making.”
History of World Water Day
It is a sad but real truth that 783 million people worldwide do not have access to safe drinking water. While over 2.5 million individuals worldwide continue to lack access to proper sanitary services.
This tragic lack of accessible alternatives for these two fundamental human needs is something that people worldwide are working to manage and deliver clean water and better sanitation facilities to disadvantaged areas all over the world.
The inaugural of world water day was suggested in Agenda 22 of the Rio de Janeiro United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in 1992. In December of that year, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution establishing water day on March 22 of each year dedicated to raising awareness about global water-related concerns. The primary focus was on ensuring every community had access to a clean water supply. The inaugural water day was celebrated in March 1993, and it has been held every year since then.
Water day arose from the need for clean water and proper sanitary facilities for everybody. The United Nations agreed to establish a world water day to tackle the global clean water and sanitation issue. World water day aims to provide people a day to focus on aiding and supporting communities throughout the world in having access to safe and clean water and sanitation facilities.
World water day also emphasizes how ordinary people may assist others in afflicted areas reclaim their dignity while also improving their long-term health and well-being via access to clean and safe water. Other challenges, such as protecting local aquatic ecosystems, are also addressed each year.
Water day focuses largely on access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation, but it also examines various water-related issues affecting the larger society.
Why is water so important?
Water is necessary for all kinds of life and can dissolve almost anything. It can exist in the form of a gas (water vapors and steam), a liquid (water), or a solid (ice). Water occupies 75% of the earth’s surface, yet only a tiny portion of it is freshwater that may be utilized directly by people, animals, and plants because:
- 2% of the world’s water is frozen in the north and south poles, glaciers, and snow-covered mountain ranges.
- 97% of this water is in the seas and is too salty for humans, animals, or plants to consume.
Water is made up of microscopic molecules, each so small that even the most powerful microscope cannot see them. These molecules have three atoms: two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. Because of the electrical energy that binds these atoms together, they are known as H2O.
Properties of water
- Water is the only material on the planet that exists as a solid, a liquid, and a gas. These state changes necessitate heat exchange, which is critical to redistributing heat energy in the atmosphere.
- Water has a high specific heat, which allows it to absorb significant quantities of heat energy before becoming heated and slowly release energy when conditions lead it to cool. This serves to manage the earth’s climate and aids organisms in controlling their body temperature.
- Water has a neutral pH and is neither acidic nor basic. Changes in pH occur when things are dissolved. Rain is naturally acidic, with roughly 5.6, due to the dissolved carbon dioxide and Sulphur dioxide.
- Except for mercury, water transmits heat more easily than any other liquid. As a result, huge bodies of water have a consistent vertical temperature.
- Water is a universal solvent that can dissolve many chemical substances. This property also allows water to transport solvent nutrients in runoff, infiltration, groundwater movement, and living creatures.
- Water has high surface tension and forms droplets easily. This permits water and dissolved nutrients to pass through plants and blood vessels in certain animals’ bodies.
Significance of water in our body
Water protects your tissues, spine, and joints
According to the Mayo Clinic Health System, water does more than simply relieve your thirst and regulate your body’s temperature; it also keeps your body’s tissues hydrated. How does it feel when your eyes, nose, or mouth get dry? Keeping your body hydrated aids in the retention of optimal moisture levels in these delicate tissues, as well as the blood, bones, and brain. Furthermore, water protects the spinal cord and works as a lubricant and cushion for your joints.
Water aids in the removal of waste from your body
Adequate water consumption allows your body to expel waste through sweat, urine, and faeces. According to the National Kidney Foundation, water helps your kidneys eliminate waste from your blood and keep the blood capillaries that travel to your kidneys open and filter them out. According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, water is also beneficial for preventing constipation. However, according to the study, no proof increasing your fluid consumption would relieve constipation.
Digestion is aided by water
Water is necessary for proper digestion. According to the Mayo Clinic, water aids in the breakdown of food, allowing nutrients to be absorbed by your body. Following a drink, both your small and large intestines absorb water, which enters your circulation and is utilized to break down nutrients. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), faeces transforms from watery to solid when your large intestine absorbs water. According to MedlinePlus, water is also required to aid the digestion of soluble fiber.
Water keeps you hydrated and keeps you from becoming dehydrated
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), your body loses fluids when you exercise vigorously, sweat in hot weather, get a fever, or get an illness that causes vomiting or diarrhoea. If you’re losing fluids for any of these causes, you should up your fluid intake to restore your body’s normal hydration level. Your doctor may also advise you to drink extra fluids to manage other health issues, such as bladder infections and urinary tract stones. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you should talk to your doctor about your fluid consumption since your body will need more fluids than normal, especially if you’re breastfeeding.
Water promotes optimal brain function
Have you ever felt foggy-headed? Drink a sip of water. According to a research on adult men from China published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health in June 2019, dehydration is a drag on memory, attention, and vitality. It’s no surprise, given that water makes up approximately 75% of the brain, as the authors point out. Adequate electrolyte balance is critical to maintaining healthy biological function. Muscle weakness, weariness, and disorientation can all result from a lack of electrolytes, explains Gabrielle Lyon, DO, a functional medicine specialist in New York City.
Water is good for your cardiovascular system
Water makes up a large portion of your blood. For example, plasma, the pale yellow liquid element of your blood, is around 90% water. According to Susan Blum, MD, founder of the Blum Center for Health in Rye Brook, New York,
“When you get dehydrated, your blood becomes more concentrated, leading to an imbalance of the electrolyte elements it contains (sodium and potassium, for example).”
These electrolytes are required for healthy muscle and cardiac function. Dehydration can also result in lesser blood volume and, as a result, blood pressure, so you may feel light-headed or wobbly standing up.
What is water scarcity and what are its impacts?
Water scarcity is described as a shortage of safe water sources or a water shortfall. As the world’s population rises and the environment is increasingly harmed by climate change, access to drinking safe water becomes more limited.
785 million people worldwide do not have access to safe drinking water. Every day, over 800 children die in many communities throughout the world due to diarrhoea caused by poor water, sanitation, and hygiene, as well as insufficient or unreliable water and sanitation services.
Water shortage has an impact on people and communities. They may be trapped in poverty for decades if clean, conveniently accessible water is unavailable. Children drop out of school as parents struggle to make ends meet.
Women and children are the hardest impacted, with youngsters being more sensitive to diseases caused by contaminated water. Women and girls typically bear the responsibility of carrying water for their families for an estimated 200 million hours every day. Access to safe drinking water transforms everything; it is necessary to grow. People can better practice appropriate hygiene and sanitation when they have access to clean water.
How to save water?
Examine your toilet for leaks
Fill your toilet tank with a few drops of food coloring. If the coloring begins to develop in the bowl without flushing, then there is a leakage that might be squandering more than 100 gallons of water every day.
No longer use your toilet as an ashtray or wastebasket
Every cigarette butt or tissue flushed away wastes five to seven liters of water.
Fill your toilet tank with a plastic bottle
Fill the bottom of a one-liter container with an inch or two of sand or stones to weigh it down. Fill the bottle with water and place it away from the functioning mechanism in your toilet tank. The bottle may save five gallons or more of water every day in an ordinary home without affecting the toilet’s performance. If your tank is large enough, you may be able to fit two bottles inside.
Take fewer showers
A regular shower consumes 5 to 10 liters of water each minute. Shower only for the time it takes to soap up, wash down, and rise.
Install low-flow showerheads or flow restrictors to save water
Your local hardware or plumbing supply store will have low-cost showerheads or flow restrictors that will reduce your shower flow to three gallons per minute instead of five to ten. They are simple to install and will keep your showers clean and refreshing.
While brushing your teeth, turn off the water
Wet your brush before brushing, and fill a glass with water to rinse your mouth.
While shaving, turn off the water
Fill a couple of inches of warm water in the bottom of the sink for rinsing your razor.
Examine faucets and pipes for leaks
A little drop might waste up to 50 gallons of water every day.
Only run your automatic dishwasher when you have a full load
You use around 25 gallons of water each time you run your dishwasher.
Only use your automated washing machine for full loads
Your automatic washer consumes 30 to 35 liters of water every cycle.
Don’t leave the water running while you’re cleaning veggies
Instead, rinse your veggies in a dish or sink full of clean water.
Store a bottle of drinking water in the fridge
This eliminates the wasteful practice of running tap water to chill it before drinking it.
When hand-washing dishes, do not leave the water running for rinsing
Fill one sink with rinse water if you have two. If you just have one sink, place all of your washed dishes in a dish rack before swiftly rinsing them with a spray device or a pan of water.
Soak your yard well
Water your grass for long enough to allow water to sink to the roots where it is required. A little dusting on the surface will simply evaporate and be thrown away.
Don’t rinse the gutters
Place your sprinklers so that waterfalls on your grass or garden rather than in regions where it is ineffective. Also, avoid watering on windy days, as most of your water will be swept away to the streets and sidewalks.
How to celebrate world water day?
Water day and its initiatives reach millions of people every year through social media, conventional marketing, and public relations. The UN also has a variety of specific websites and platforms for promoting and increasing awareness of world water day.
In 2017, for example, 700 unique activities were organized in 110 countries, and over 500,000 authors were active on social media using the special hashtag: ‘#WorldWaterDay.’ The number of visitors to the water day website increased by 25% in 2018, and the maximum possible reach on social media increased. Celebrities play an important role in world water day and its celebration, with several well-known celebrities taking part in the annual water day events.
Interestingly, the UN’s annual water report in 2016 observed that social media involvement via the dedicated hashtag had a massive reach, with the message potentially reaching 1.6 billion people. People from all across the world participate in water day festivities, and the UN encourages everyone to “do their part,” with the important message being that “we cannot afford to wait – everyone has a role to play.” The UN urges individuals to ‘play their part’ by learning what it means to take action, spreading campaign messages far and wide, and taking measures to act and contribute in some manner.
Every year, communities worldwide come together to honor world water day. What’s great about this worldwide event is that there are several opportunities for every community to participate. Here are the number of things you can do: Gather your buddies and establish your water cleanup crew. This may appear to be a little trivial action, yet litter and waste are extremely dangerous to wildlife. Furthermore, the little rivers and streams around you are most likely feeding into a bigger body of water. If you don’t pick up the abandoned six-pack ring, it may end up in the water, where it will be terrible news for a fish or bird.
You might not think you use a lot of water in your regular life, but you’d be shocked how much water it takes to do household duties. The average American shower consumes around 17 gallons of water, while a single toilet flush consumes an astounding 7 gallons. If you want to reduce your daily water use, several items are available to assist you in doing so, such as low-flow toilets and showerheads.
You may host a charity event to make a big and immediate difference. World water day celebrations are held in towns all around the world. You might just raise awareness about any of the water-related difficulties we face, or you could collect funds for regions in desperate need.
Other possibilities are available, such as presenting charity concerts, film screenings, and contests, sponsoring discussions on the year’s focus issue, arranging fundraising activities such as swim marathons, triathlons, races, sports days. Fun runs or organizing marches to promote awareness.
Each year, several virtual events are organized in addition to face-to-face activities. These include a variety of activities, such as social media discussions and community conversations and live webinars and Facebook virtual events. If you cannot participate in water day by attending an event physically, you can still join it through virtual events.
Why is world water day important?
Millions of individuals are affected
An estimated 780 million people do not have access to safe drinking water. Drinking polluted water can cause a variety of potentially fatal ailments. This may appear to be a third-world issue, but Flint Michigan demonstrated that water issues could also be found in the United States.
Wildlife is harmed by water contamination
It is not only humans that require access to drinking safe water. Every year, thousands of animals are killed due to water contamination. Pollution may occur in various ways, ranging from physical litter to wastewater and chemical runoff, causing the water to become poisonous to the creatures that rely on it for drinking and survival.
Water is intertwined with a slew of other environmental concerns
Every year, world water day has a different theme, such as “Nature for Water,” which focuses on finding natural solutions to our water challenges. Many of the environmental issues we face are interrelated; for example, climate change and ecosystem degradation are linked to, and often direct causes of, water pollution, floods, and droughts.
Facts about water
Water may hold the key to finding life
Water is present in almost every specie. It is present in all living things, whether at the bottom of the sea or in the driest desert. Water enabled life to exist on earth. As a result, astrobiologists (scientists who look for life on other planets) believe that water is our greatest option for discovering life.
The oceans contain nearly all of the water on earth
Our seas contain 96.5% of the water on earth and cover 71% of the planet’s surface. And at any given time, around 0.001% of the atmosphere is floating above us. If all of that water fell as rain at once, the entire world would get around 1 inch of rain.
The majority of freshwater is encased in ice
Only 3.5% of the earth’s water is fresh that it contains minimal salts. Freshwater can be found in our lakes, rivers, and streams, but don’t forget about groundwater and glaciers. Over 68% of the world’s freshwater is trapped in ice and glaciers. Another 30% is found in groundwater.
The concentration of salt in saltwater varies
A gallon of typical ocean water contains around 1 cup of salt. However, it varies. The Atlantic Ocean, for example, is saltier than the Pacific Ocean. The majority of the salt in the ocean is sodium chloride, which is the same salt we use on our food.
A lot of life may exist in a single drop of water
A single drop of ocean water may contain a lot of information. It will almost certainly be infested with millions of germs and viruses. It may also contain fish eggs, young crabs, plankton, or microscopic worms.
Some of the water might have originated from comets
Water was present in the rocky elements that created the earth. However, this is unlikely to account for all of the water we see today. Comets are largely made of water ice. It’s possible that comets delivered water to earth regularly. It would take a lot of comets to fill the ocean, but comets might have played a significant role.
It’s fantastic that ice floats
When atoms come together to create a solid, they usually grow closer together to make something denser. This is why the majority of solids sink in water. However, solid water, or ice, is less dense. This is not common. When water freezes, the water molecules form rings. All of that space reduces the density of ice. This explains why it floats. This is advantageous because ice resting on top of a body of water allows the remainder of it to remain liquid. Whole oceans might freeze solid if ice sank.
Our bodies are mainly made up of water
A newborn infant is made up of 78% water. Adults are composed of 55-60% water. Water is involved in almost everything our bodies do. It is a significant blood component that transports nutrients to all of our cells. We utilize it to dispose of garbage. It aids in the regulation of our body temperature. It works as a cushion for our brain and spinal cord. We are extremely reliant on water.
Water resists gravity in plants
Water has an intriguing property. It’s a little “sticky.” It enjoys sticking to itself and other objects. That is why water condenses into spherical droplets. That is not true of all liquids. This “stickiness” aids in the movement of water from the roots of plants to the leaves. Water molecules cling to each other and the walls of the tube as they move up thin straws called xylem in the plant. As water evaporates from the upper leaves, they are drawn higher.
We get to view water in three distinct states, which is unusual
Water exists in solid ice, liquid water, and gas water vapors. That is odd. At the same time, all substances can be solid, liquid, or gas, many change states at extremely high temperatures. Because their melting and freezing points are at temperatures that kill humans, you probably don’t see much liquid silver or solid oxygen.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the symbol of world water day?
The main symbol of world water day is a water drop in the UN’s colour blue. On this occasion, photographs of water in use or rivers, reservoirs, lakes, or oceans are frequently presented.
When was the first water day celebrated?
The United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution in 1993 declaring March 22 of each year as world day for water, marked the beginning in 1993. Other celebrations and events were also added.
Who founded world water day?
This day was explicitly suggested for the first time in Agenda 21 of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution A/RES/47/193 in December 1992, designating March 22 as world day for water.
What is World Vision’s 2030 aim for its water programme to aid in the resolution of the worldwide water crisis?
The World Vision aim is for all communities globally to have access to clean water (defined as a 30-minute or shorter round-trip walk to a water source), appropriate sanitation, hand-washing facilities, and menstrual hygiene facilities by 2030 hygiene promotion and behaviour change.
The involvement of the most vulnerable men, women, and children will be emphasized in the global WASH programme. It will guarantee that persons with disabilities, people living with HIV and AIDS, and other vulnerable groups are actively involved and benefit from hygiene messages, greater access to sustainable clean water, and better sanitation in each location.
How does a shortage of clean water impact women and girls?
Women and girls carry the heaviest burden in developing nations since they are frequently responsible for transporting water to their houses. Every day, they spend an estimated 200 million hours gathering water. Every day, the average African woman treks six kilometers to transport 18kg of water. This daily grind saps her vitality for other activities. It deprives her of the chance to spend time with her family or pursue education and income-generating hobbies to better their lives.
Girls who continue to attend school until adolescence are more likely to drop out when they begin menstruation unless they provide clean water, restrooms, sanitary supplies, and hygiene education. Helping young women manage their menstrual health entails providing suitable facilities and addressing societal norms.
Lack of sanitation, clean water, and basic hygiene during delivery contribute to the high incidence of sickness and mortality among women and babies in underdeveloped nations. World Vision is stepping up its efforts to provide clean water, toilets, and hand-washing facilities at more health centers to ensure safer births.
The UN has said that extreme weather events have made water scarcer, unpredictable, and contaminated. They have also looked at how we, as a society, require water to exist, as do the systems on which we rely, such as healthcare, sanitation, education, business, and various industries. According to the UN, action plans are critical for combating climate change, and they must be integrated across several sectors to be effective.
Water day is an annual event that examines worldwide challenges related to clean, safe drinking water and sanitation. Water is such a valuable resource that many people take it for granted. World water day is an opportunity to reflect on those people and places where water is still a critical issue and work together to find a solution.
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