Report on water crisis released by World Resources Institute (WRI)
According to a recently published report, one-fourth of the world’s population is facing extremely high water stress.
As per the data released by the World Resources Institute (WRI), 25 countries including India are facing extremely severe water crisis every year.
“Extreme water stress” being faced by a country means that the country uses at least 80 percent of its annual available water supply.
Similarly, “high water stress” refers to the exploitation of at least 40 percent of the annually available water supply.
Other Key Points:
- 50 percent of the world’s population faces extreme water stress conditions for at least one month a year.
- By 2050, 31 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP) will be affected by severe water stress.
- By 2050, four countries, namely India, Mexico, Egypt and Turkey, will be responsible for more than half of global GDP affected by severe water stress.
- 60 percent of the world’s irrigated agricultural land is facing severe water stress.
Reasons for global water crisis:
- Water usage has increased,
- There is a lack of investment in water-related infrastructure,
- Policies related to water use are not sustainable.
- The gap in water availability has increased due to climate change etc.
- Water use governing structures should be improved through development of nature-based solutions and green infrastructures.
- Adoption of programs such as debt for nature swaps should be considered. Such programs should include a commitment to invest in mangrove restoration or wetland conservation.
- Cultivation of water-use efficient crops should be promoted. Under this, instead of irrigation through drains in the fields, methods like sprinkler or drip irrigation should be used.
- Urban water resilience action plans should be developed in cities.
Initiatives taken for water conservation in India:
- National Water Mission has been started.
- Water conservation initiatives are included under different schemes like MNREGA, Atal Groundwater Scheme, Pradhan Mantri Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY), AMRUT Mission, Jal Jeevan Mission.
- Jal Shakti Abhiyan – Catch the Rain is being run.
- Right crop campaign has been started.
World Resources Institute (WRI):
- WRI is a global research organization, spanning more than 50 countries and focusing on six critical environmental and development issues: climate, energy, food, forests, water, and cities and transport.
- It was established in 1982. Its headquarters is in Washington, USA.
Source – WRI