On Sunday, the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) kicked off its annual World Water Week (August 23-28). The global conference will focus on the most relevant topics related to this year’s theme, Water for Development.
Last year, the conference hosted over 3,000 experts, decision-makers, and advocates from the world’s scientific, business, and government communities, representing 143 countries. With the goal of exchanging ideas and developing solutions, World Water Week seeks to tackle our most pressing water-related challenges including climate change, water management, and gender issues. It’s an important topic considering that the World Health Organization reports over 1 billion people still lack access to safe water and over 2 billion people lack access to basic sanitation. As a result, 1.6 billion people die annually from diseases directly attributed to the lack of access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation.
World Water Week seeks to encourage progress by linking scientific understanding with policy and decision-making to develop sustainable solutions. While there’s still a lot of work to do, access to safe drinking water and sanitation is possible. Earlier this year, SIWI launched the Best Water Idea campaign prompting the international community to get involved. The campaign enables anyone – from a student to an expert – to vote for and share their favorite sustainable water solutions on social media through the end of World Water Week.
But the discussion of water scarcity doesn’t have to end on August 28 – especially for your students. This year, one of the optional topics for our annual World of 7 Billion student video contest challenges students to create a 60 second video outlining the problems related to water availability and come up with at least one sustainable solution. The contest will begin accepting entries in September and the deadline to submit a video is Thursday, February 25, 2016. For details and more information please visit the World of 7 Billion website.