Apr 08, 2012 News
By Rabindra Rooplall
Only three per cent of the earth’s water is fresh, non-saline water. Of that non-saline water, 31% is accessible as fresh water. For every gallon of fresh surface water, there are 30 gallons that lie underground.
Water is held in underground reservoirs known as aquifers (water bearing rock). To collect in the aquifers, water passes through the atmosphere where it dissolves and collects atmospheric gases such as nitrogen, carbon dioxide and sulphur dioxide. When it falls to the surface as rain, it is mildly acidic with a pH just below 7.
Current water management practices may not be robust enough to cope with the impacts of climate change on water supply reliability. Higher water temperatures and changes in extremes, including floods and droughts, are projected to affect water quality and exacerbate many forms of water pollution and as such Guyana Water Incorporated is promoting discussion aimed to educate Guyanese about the need to conserve precious freshwater resources which are vital to the Agriculture sector and overall economy.
One such programme was aired on National Communications Network (Channel 11) last Sunday under this year’s World Water Day theme, “Water and Food Security”.
“We continue to be alarmed by persons dumping garbage into our freshwater,” GWI Public Relations Officer Timothy Austin asserts, “these include creeks, rivers and canals, such as the Lamaha Canal which are used not only to provide our customers countrywide with water, but for irrigation and food production.”
The water authority two years ago also officially launched its public awareness radio jingle titled ‘Save the Water’ that appealed for Guyanese to curb the wastage of water.
GWI also promoted its ‘Water Conservation and Public Education Strategic Plan’ which was executed under the theme “Creating Behavioural Change to Curb Wastage”. This strategy encompasses GWI’S “H2O Kidz’ ‘N’ Action” School Education Programme and the Company’s Customer Services Community Awareness Campaign, “Community Connect”.
The “H2O Kids in Action” workshop forms a part of the Company’s overall public education programme which seeks to foster awareness among customers of the dangerous levels at which water is wasted in Guyana.
Students were urged to propagate the message of conservation within their school and home environments. Students were provided with guidelines on how to identify leaks as well as the various water conservation methods which are necessary due to the looming global water scarcity.
The “H2O Kidz Programme” targets children ages 7-9 years since they are more receptive.
“The programme has been a tremendous success for the Company and we continue to receive positive feedback from schools and Parent/Teacher Associations,” Austin explained, adding that “the summer programme continues this success and our aim is to encourage participants to propagate the message of conservation, especially during this period.”
Nevertheless, water runs through homes for myriad reasons, from washing machines to dishwashers, sinks to toilets, showers to boilers; a healthy house depends upon a supply of clean water.
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