Friday, March 22, 2013

World Water Day - 22nd March

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About the Day

The United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/47/193 of 22 December 1992 by which 22 March of each year was declared World Day for Water, to be observed starting in 1993, in conformity with the recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) contained in Chapter 18 (Fresh Water Resources) of Agenda 21. States were invited to devote the Day, as appropriate in the national context, to concrete activities such as the promotion of public awareness through the publication and diffusion of documentaries and the organization of conferences, round tables, seminars and expositions related to the conservation and development of water resources and the implementation of the recommendations of Agenda 21.
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World Water Day 2013

http://www.unwater.org/water-cooperation-2013/events/world-water-day/en/

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World Water Day 2012 Events

http://www.unwater.org/wwd12/

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World Water Day 2011 Theme



Water for Cities: Responding to the Urban Challenge
http://www.unwater.org/worldwaterday/
http://www.unwater.org/worldwaterday/mainindex.html

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World Water Day 2010 Theme

Clean Water for a Healthy World

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Message from Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO


on the occasion of World Water Day  “Clean Water for a Healthy World”
Water is fundamental to life on earth. For human populations and ecosystems to thrive, that water must be clean, it must stay clean and, most importantly, it must be accessible to all.

World Water Day 2010 calls for “ Clean Water for a Healthy World ”. As we celebrate this Day, let us consider the facts. More than 2.5 billion people live without proper sanitation. An estimated 884 million people, the majority of them in Africa, do not have access to safe drinking water. Some 1.5 million children under five die each year from sickness caused by water-borne diseases. The degradation of water quality in rivers, streams, lakes, and groundwater systems has a direct impact on ecosystems and human health. This state of affairs represents an unspeakable human tragedy, and is also major obstacle to development.

Water-related sickness and the additional financial hardship it brings, lowers the odds that a poor family will educate its children. This, in turn, robs the next generation of the opportunity to improve their own circumstances and break the cycle of poverty and deprivation trapping them. Clean water and proper sanitation are where it all starts. A key approach to addressing water quality challenges should be based on pollution prevention, control and restoration strategies.

Numerous rivers, once the source of human prosperity and rich wildlife, are now heavily polluted. The degradation of water quality in surface and groundwater systems is further exacerbating water scarcity and negatively impacting our natural environment and the ecosystem services and goods that it provides, jeopardizing food security and livelihoods.

In these cost-cutting times, when economic difficulties jeopardise investment in development, let us be clear that developmental progress more than pays for itself. It has been estimated that achieving the Millenium Development Goals for access to safe water and sanitation would produce a global saving of more than $84 billion. We already have the scientific knowledge to make immediate strides in the
provision of clean water and sanitation, provided the funding is there. Researchers are developing new and ingenious ways of protecting surface waters and groundwater systems from pollution, and ensuring better water management.

As the lead UN agency for water sciences and education, UNESCO is moving ahead with an array of programmes to further this know-how. UNESCO’s International Hydrological Programme is actively engaged in fostering science and knowledge for protecting the quality of surface waters and groundwater systems. Likewise, UNESCO is an active contributor to the monitoring of the state of the world’s freshwater resources in the World Water Development Report coordinated by the World Water Assessment Programme, whose secretariat is hosted and led by UNESCO. Since 2003, UNESCO has overseen the training of dozens of water scientists and engineers from developing countries at the Netherlands based UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, a world-ranking establishment.
UNESCO promotes capacity building for better management of water resources through its water centres and chairs operating under the auspices of UNESCO in many parts of the world.

Much remains to be done if we are to make a difference to the lives of millions of people. On this World Water Day, I urge Governments, civil society, the private sector and all stakeholders to put the goal of “Clean Water for a Healthy World” at the forefront of their priorities.

Irina Bokova
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PepsiCo Marks World Water Day 2010 with Global Water Goals

PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP) announced global goals to provide access to safe water to three million people in developing countries by 2015 and to continuously strive for positive water balance in company operations in water-distressed areas.

After more than a decade of actively promoting sustainable water resource management, PepsiCo continues to drive responsible water solutions that are socially responsible, scientifically based and economically sound.  Some of PepsiCo's water initiatives and milestones include:
In 2009, PepsiCo saved more than 11 billion liters of water through efficiency improvements.
In the U.S., the company began cleaning new Gatorade bottles with purified air instead of rinsing with water. The method works so well it is being adopted, along with other conservation techniques, by bottling facilities around the world, saving billions of liters of water from going down the drain.

In the UK, PepsiCo Walkers' business has already reduced water usage at its largest potato chip facility by 42 percent between 2001 and 2007. Potatoes naturally contain a lot of water, and Walkers is working to capture that moisture and use it to make the UK facilities essentially self-sufficient in water, unplugged from the water mains.

Agriculture uses 70 percent of the world's water. That's why in China, PepsiCo is sharing conservation techniques with its local farmers. These efforts have cut the water usage required to grow potatoes for Lay's potato chips in China by more than half.

In India, PepsiCo beverage operations reduced water use in manufacturing by more than 45 percent and conserved more than 3 billion liters of water since 2007, achieving positive water balance – giving back more water than the company consumed.

One of PepsiCo India's most successful initiatives has been its work with farmers to reduce the amount of water used in rice cultivation. The company introduced a technology called "direct seeding." Rather than growing seedlings in a nursery, planting them, then flooding the fields, direct seeding allows seeds to be planted directly into the ground, bypassing the nursery. This also removes the need for flood irrigation, and saves as much 30 percent of water needed. In 2009, direct seeding was extended to more than 6,500 acres of land resulting in savings of 5.5 billion liters of water.

In Australia, PepsiCo's Smith's snacks manufacturing facility commissioned the first wastewater reuse system, which will dramatically reduce stress on local water resources at a time when the country is facing one of the worst droughts in history.

In China, PepsiCo is teaching farmers to grow potatoes and other cash crops in desert conditions. The farmers are replacing traditional flood irrigation with pivot and drip irrigation. In drip irrigation, small holes in pipes literally 'drip' water on the field, reducing water usage by up to 50 percent.

In Arizona, PepsiCo equipped the Frito-Lay facility in Casa Grande with a state-of-the-art water filtration and purification system to recycle and reuse approximately 80 percent of the process water used in production. For 10 consecutive years, PepsiCo has significantly reduced the amount of water used to make our Frito-Lay products in North America.

In Mexico, the Gatorade plant installed a rain water harvest system, which collected 640 cubic meters of water in 2009. This has helped recharge the underground aquifer affected by Mexico City's population growth and has contributed to the business's overall water usage reduction of 10.5 percent vs. 2008.
Since 2005, the PepsiCo Foundation has committed more than $15 million to initiatives that provide access to safe water and sanitation to communities in developing countries.

In 2011, The PepsiCo Foundation will reach its goal of providing access to safe water and sanitation to 1 million people. This will be achieved through support of such partners as Water.org, Safe Water Network, The Energy Resources Institute, China Women's Development Foundation and the Earth Institute at Columbia University. These projects are helping to install village water and irrigation systems, establishing water health centers, constructing nearly 750 rainwater harvesting cisterns, improve sanitation programs and recharge aquifers in developing communities, particularly in Ghana, Kenya, Brazil, China and India.
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KVSSNRao   2010
The events related to the day are certainly useful in making people aware of issues and make them sensitive. Morning I had a casual look at an advertisment in the paper. But when I got down from my bus, I observed a person full covered carrying the messages related to World Water Day at the gate of Larsen and Toubro, a large Engineering company of India situated at Powai, Mumbai. There are more volunteer behind him with T-shirts having world water day message. I came to the office and started this knol to share the event with knol readers and authors. Let us make more people aware of the issue and help in promoting investment in providing clean water to all people of the world.
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Related Web Sites
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Original knol - http://knol.google.com/k/narayana-rao/world-water-day-22nd-march/2utb2lsm2k7a/ 2400

Thursday, March 21, 2013

World Forest Day - 21 March



About the day


The United Nations General Assembly has passed a draft resolution to designate 21 March each year as World Forest Day, encouraging all Member States to organize forest-related activities. This resolution marks the importance of forests and their contribution to human enlightenment.

March 21 is observed as ‘World Forestry Day’ around the globe every year to raise awareness about the significance of forests and its ecosystems, and to provide opportunities for people to learn how forests can be managed and used sustainably for generations to come.

http://zeenews.india.com/SlideShow/world-forestry-day_37.html

http://www.fao.org/docrep/f3730e/f3730e0c.htm
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World Forest Day 2012

http://www.fao.org/docrep/f3730e/f3730e0c.htm

Visit the Amazon on World Forest Day with Google Street View

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forest_Day