Report and video: Experts commit to water solutions for our changing climate


The video of the event “Water solutions for our climate change” is HERE recorded on Monday November 1st.

Water is the face of climate change and it is also the face of potential solutions that we can develop to address climate issues both in the area of ​​climate change mitigation and adaptation.

In the search for water solutions, on November 1, the International Water Resources Association (IWRA) together with the University of Strathclyde, the University of Dundee and OOSKAnews hosted a pre-COP26 seminar on water solutions for climate change. The event served to bring together a wide range of water-related solutions to increase water security in a changing climate.

Solutions were presented both in the field of nature-based solutions and in the fields of new emerging water technologies. Teacher. Christopher Spray from the University of Dundee University pointed out that future impacts of climate change can be modeled at a very localized scale, and currently in the Borders of Scotland monitoring of the impacts of nature-based solutions is underway. Science provides important anchor points for nature-based solutions, and interventions such as debris dams, tree planting, and river rewinding are useful tools for reducing the impact of a flow. and greater variability in rivers. However, in introducing such changes it is essential to understand the community responses and the solutions must make economic sense to stakeholders if they are to be widely accepted.

Lessons from Ethiopia and Pakistan, presented by Mihretab Gebratsadik, Tokyo National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies focused on the role of tree planting: Ethiopia initiated planting 6 billion trees as a measure of adaptation to the climate and to replenish groundwater in the context of its “Green heritage” campaign. Likewise, Pakistan, which ranks fifth in the world for climate vulnerability, has launched a tree-planting “tsunami” of 10 billion trees to reduce flood risk and respond to the dangers of melting glaciers. and reduction of snowfall in the upper watershed. One of the main challenges of replanting is the tendency to plant large numbers of a single species, which does not restore biodiversity.

In a New York report, Thaddeus Pawlowski of the Columbia University Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes described how 1.2 million people in New York City find themselves in areas that can be flooded, and power outages during Super Storm Sandy in 2012, also show very clearly which areas were affected. The current vision is to increase protection along the waterfront, (re) convert land into underlying natural drainage areas, move people further inland and develop multiple lines of land. defense. However, the climate for stakeholder involvement in developing this vision and resolving key conflicts is not yet present.

In the section on the impacts of new technologies on development, Professor Cecilia Tortajada of the University of Glasgow provided an overview of technical innovation in the water sector in Singapore. Singapore depends for its water on local abstraction, imported water, reuse of treated wastewater and desalination. Singapore has been working with a 50-year planning framework that provides stability and allows for long-term research and development investments amounting to $ 724 million (Singapore dollars) since 2002. This has notably resulted in a smart water drainage network, close monitoring of the quality of treated wastewater, and a water solutions demonstration fund for promising initiatives.

On unconventional water resources, Dr Renee Martin Nagle of A Ripple Effect, listed techniques such as mist collecting, vapor collecting, cloud seeding, rainwater harvesting, onshore and offshore deep groundwater, municipal wastewater reuse, brackish desalinated water, and more hypothetical techniques such as iceberg towing and ballast water.

Netra Chhetri of Arizona State University spoke about two geoengineering classes, namely solar radiation management and carbon dioxide removal. The predominant research in these areas is highly motivated by wealth, and in terms of equity and justice, there is a fear of the unknown: it could offset some of the effects of GHGs on regional and global climate, including the water cycle, but could also induce abrupt changes in the water cycle if implemented quickly.

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