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2017 | Buch

The Human Face of Water Security

herausgegeben von: David Devlaeminck, Zafar Adeel, Robert Sandford

Verlag: Springer International Publishing

Buchreihe : Water Security in a New World


Über dieses Buch

This volume collects essays from academics and practitioners from a diversity of areas and perspectives in order to discuss water security at various levels and to illuminate the central idea of water security: its focus on the individual. Beginning with the big picture, this book aims to illustrate the depth of the water security crisis and its interconnections with other aspects of societal development. It particularly draws a connection to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and discusses that challenges faced in meeting the 17 sustainability development goals (SDG) by the year 2030. Moving from international to domestic and community perspectives, this book provides a unique analysis of issues and solutions to the water issues we face today in light of the ever looming global changes brought on by climate change.

Over the past few decades the recognition of our common need for water has increased, as policymakers have sought to place more focus on the individual within policy. After the recognition of water and sanitation as a fundamental human right by the United Nations General Assembly in 2010, there is increasing recognition of the individual as the building block for the struggle for water security. This reality also intersects with adverse impacts of global climate change, and the book responds to the broader question: will clean and safe water be available where we need it and when we need it in the future?


Chapter 1. The Human Face of Water Insecurity
The timely availability of fresh water has for decades been recognized as a global concern. In addition to matters of availability and quality we now recognize that the world will soon be redefined by changing precipitation patterns associated with an increase in the mean temperature of our planet’s atmosphere. This will result in droughts in some places becoming deeper and more persistent making human presence in some parts of the world impossible to sustain. While it did not receive the same attention in the media, the announcement of UN’s 2030 Transforming Our World global sustainable development agenda was at least as important as the climate negotiations held in Paris 2 months later if only because it deals with damage we are doing to other elements of the Earth system that are exacerbating and being exacerbated by climate change. The goals in the agenda of improving the management of water globally and acting on climate change need to be elevated to special importance because success cannot be achieved in addressing other critical global sustainable development challenges, which include huge challenges such as eliminating poverty and hunger and bringing about peace and stability, unless we manage water more effectively, a goal that can only be achieved by stabilizing the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere. This chapter argues that if we do not make water security and water-related climate stability a global imperative at the national and sub-national level, the result will be greater regional tension, conflict and involuntary migration related in large measure to water insecurity.
Robert Sandford
Chapter 2. Water Security as the Centerpiece of the Sustainable Development Agenda
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has adopted some unique fundamentals: it is universal and applies to all countries; it is comprehensive and seeks to completely eliminate problems; it is complex as shown by the large numbers of goals and targets; and, it is ambitious as it aims to fix major global problems in a 15-year span. It signifies a paradigm shift in international development that emphasizes the role of national governments and other domestic stakeholders. Water security is a keystone element in achieving the 2030 Agenda – not just for Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 that focuses primarily on water security, but a number of targets embedded within other SDGs related to health, cities, consumption, marine resources, and terrestrial ecosystems. The concept of water security is quite pervasive in the international discourse on sustainable development, and lines up strongly with the notion of water as a human right. For the SDGs to succeed, water security must be achieved across all geographic scales – from international to national to sub-national to community – and across all social strata. Achieving this objective requires considerable alignment of all stakeholders: governments, farmers, private businesses, civil society organizations, researchers, and scientists. Implementation to achieve the various water-related targets offers an excellent opportunity for creating innovative and integrated solutions. These solutions require equally innovative and enabling policy environment, a role that is typically well suited to governments at various levels. Future outlook for achieving universal water security for all individuals is positive, but requires considerable rethinking around economic and social development.
Zafar Adeel
Chapter 3. Water, Law and Equity
While the legal concept of “equity” as a body of rules is routinely employed in a number of fields of international law relevant to the management of water resources and the supply of water services, including international environmental law and international human rights law, it is absolutely central to international water resources law, i.e. the body of rules concerned with the inter-State allocation of rights in the uses and benefits of shared transboundary waters. As suggested by the cardinal principle of international water law, the principle of equitable and reasonable utilisation, the overarching objective of this body of law is to determine how such rights in shared water resources can be allocated equitably, taking account of a range of relevant factors and considerations. Of course, the ultimate aim of the corpus of international rules applying to water resources management is that of ensuring human well-being by achieving the greatest attainable measure of “water security”. However, there exists little consensus about the normative nature or content of the equitable rules or principles to be applied in this context or about their legal implications for the cooperative management of transboundary waters. This chapter attempts to map the use of equitable concepts in cognate areas of international law in order to shed some light on its possible application in the field of international water law.
Owen McIntyre
Chapter 4. Water as a Human Right in the Global South: Ethical, Legal and Sociopolitical Dimensions
This chapter seeks to elucidate the scope and limitations of the international recognition of the human right to water, and the course that States must follow in order to fulfill the commitments they have assumed. It analyzes the links among the human right to water, water security, and environmental justice, given that the existence of a water crisis that requires a human-oriented approach and solution has been recognized. The chapter is divided into three parts: the first discusses the water crisis and its relation to water security and the human right to water, while the second focuses on the ethical and legal dimensions of the human right to water and postures that favor, or oppose, its recognition. Finally, the third part focuses on the sociopolitical dimension of the human right to water; that is, the role of the State in complying with and/or violating this right, and the defensive actions taken by civil society in Latin American countries (i.e., those in the Global South).
Patricia Avila-García
Chapter 5. Crime, Corruption, Terrorism and Beyond: A Typology of Water Crime
Water security is a multifaceted concept that spreads over political, social, economic and biophysical fields, becoming increasingly important in the age of looming global water crises. Previous research outcomes suggest that escalating global water crises are the results of governance failure not limited to physical shortages of freshwater resources. Water crime is defined in both procedural and moral terms as wrongdoings determined within the legal justice systems and social norms. This chapter explores water crimes in different dimensions with examples from the Global North and South and establishes typologies as follows: mismanagement of water resources causing significant social harms and environmental damage; corruption allowing allocation of water resources for a favoured party, using public office for private economic and political gains and adding payments for more effective service delivery; and, terrorism targeting water infrastructure and systems and affecting water security in water scarce regions. A broader framework to understand the multiple dimensions of water crime is an essential precondition for establishing a comprehensive strategy for achieving water security.
Kyungmee Kim, Ashok Swain
Chapter 6. Water Security Is Job Security: Water as an Enabler for Livelihoods
Water flows through all aspects of our lives, sustaining ecosystems, meeting household needs, and critically, creating opportunities for a range of productive activities. As pressures on the environment increase, understanding the role of water in supporting livelihoods is essential for ensuring the sustained wellbeing of human populations and ecosystems. This chapter examines a variety of pathways through which water of varying qualities and quantities enables livelihoods and incomes. Examples describing the role of water in securing jobs across a range of sectors are explored, including manufacturing industries, energy and agriculture. In particular, this chapter provides insight on the role of wastewater, an increasingly important resource, in providing jobs in growing cities worldwide. Barriers to securing water resources that impede economic opportunities and development, as well as emerging opportunities to reduce these obstacles are presented.
Sarah Dickin, Luca Di Mario
Chapter 7. Water Seekers, Carriers and Keepers: The Global and Gender Divide
Not having access to sufficient and safe water for basic needs is a feature of extreme poverty. Inadequate water supply and sanitation continues to be the most harmful water risk for people and globally accounts for the largest economic losses. Although gender statistics on water are scarce and scattered, it is safe to say that the larger burden still falls on women and girls, who are the traditional water seekers and carriers in secluded communities and least developed countries, but generally do not have a voice in decision-making concerning water supply and management. It is argued that the water-gender-development nexus (SDG#5 – SDG#6 interface) is a promising and largely untapped connection to reach those furthest behind, in particular through the meaningful involvement of women at all levels and stages of water management processes as called for in Dublin Principle 3 for Integrated Water Resources Management of 1992. Voices of women from Sub-Saharan Africa, a region where water and gender divides are among the highest in the world, illustrate the ingredients and processes of women’s empowerment and their inclusion in water governance, and how addressing water in conjunction with gender has a positive and lasting impact on community development as a whole. A comprehensive water-gender-sustainable development strategy gives due consideration to women’s civil society, whose potential has been only marginally utilised to date.
Alice Bouman-Dentener
Chapter 8. Public Health Dimensions of Water Insecurity
Water insecurity poses challenges to many sectors such as energy, housing, agriculture, and health. Similarly, public health addresses the biological, social, and psychological determinants of health at the population level and consequently must attend to issues in the same multiple sectors. This chapter examines the relationship between water insecurity and public health. It is argued that, in their primary roles of disease prevention/protection, mitigation, adaptation and health promotion, public health providers must lead initiatives to improve quality and ensure adequate quantities of water in order to sustain livelihoods, human well-being, and socio-economic development. Reciprocally, public health should be included in the development of public policies and community planning for water resources. Ten intersecting areas of water and public health concern are discussed: acute infection; chronic infection; food safety and security; malnutrition; maternal and newborn health; environmental integrity; disaster management; population growth; population safety; and, health information dissemination. Researchers in both development and public health need to increase their attention to identifying and evaluating the impacts of water as a hazard and of risk management strategies that can prevent, ameliorate, or mitigate water insecurities. Water security analysts need to include public health considerations in their analysis of security risks. Finally, the chapter provides examples of the intersection of water insecurity and public health from both industrial and developing parts of the world.
Susan Watt
Chapter 9. Going to the Well: Water as a Community Builder
Communities – both fixed and fluid – play a critical role in water stewardship and protection of freshwater. In this chapter, we examine the development and implementation of the Northwest Territories (NWT) Water Strategy as a mechanism for promoting collaborative action towards addressing water security challenges. Key examples of water-related initiatives and experiences in addressing water security at multiple levels are explored. A series of insights for global practitioners, based on our experiences in implementing the Water Strategy, are offered, and framed within respective successes and challenges. The chapter concludes with a discussion on the potential utility of thinking about framing ‘community’ from the lens of ‘communities of practice’, and future research directions in this regard.
Jennifer Fresque-Baxter, Erin Kelly
Chapter 10. Pathways to a Water Secure Community
Community-based water security, defined herein as “the sustainable access to affordable and reliable quantities of water of suitable quality to enable all persons to lead healthy, dignified, and productive lives, including neighbours and future users”, has not been paid a significant amount of attention to date. However, in light of current global access to drinking water and sanitation facilities, wastewater treatment coverage, the importance of water for food, energy and industry, and the impacts of climate change on the hydrological cycle, water (in)security is extremely important at the local scale and a potential threat to (de)development. While community water security can be difficult to incorporate into the water security continuum due to differences in scale, water secure communities are a building block for sustainable watersheds. After identifying the different aspects of water security at the community level, it is concluded that a comprehensive, systems approach coupled with capacity for sustainable local change is key for sustained and sustaining community water security.
Corinne J. Schuster-Wallace, Sarah E. Dickson
The Human Face of Water Security
herausgegeben von
David Devlaeminck
Zafar Adeel
Robert Sandford
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