World Water Day is an event celebrated on 22 March every year, and it is held to draw society’s attention to the greatest importance of water in our lives. The continuous population growth and the development of industrial production increase the urgency of environmental protection, and with this year’s theme, ‘Nature for Water’, the celebration aims to encourage thought and action on nature-based solutions to the water challenges we face in the 21st century.
What are nature-based solutions (NBS)?
According to UNESCO’s United Nations World Water Development Report 2018: Nature-based solutions for water, restoration and protection of forests and urban landscapes, rivers and soils are some of the examples of nature-based solutions that might help the preservation of water supply and quality.
Although NBS solutions are not a panacea to the water-related challenges that society deals with today, they are good methods for cost-effective and attention-drawing management of the urgent issues. Some of the examples proposed by the United Nations World Water Development Report 2018 include:
- Creation of sand dams across river beds for supplementary water source.
- Initiate landscape restoration to help recharge groundwater resources.
- Practice conservation agriculture by “minimizing soil disturbance; maintaining a continuous soil cover of organic mulch and/or plants; and cultivating diverse plant species.”
- Adopt the “sponge cities” (China) initiative to raise water supply in urban settlements.
Dedicated to the “World Water Day”, various organizations across the globe are holding special events to educate communities about the water-related issues and solutions, including NBS. This is a good occasion to remind all the people about the importance of water for life as well as involve the maximum number of international government officials to collaborate in solving water-related problems.