Tuesday, March 22, 2011


www.voanews.com - The United Nations has designated March 22nd World Water Day, to focus attention on the importance of safe drinking water and to advocate for the sustainable management of water resources.  This year’s theme is “Water for Cities: Responding to the Urban Challenge”.  The U.N. urges all - governments, policymakers, NGOs and citizens - to think about and take action on this most precious of natural resource.  It is the first time in human history that more of the world’s population are in cities than otherwise and that the urban population continues to grow.  Many of the population also occupy spaces of deprivation and live in slums.  Access to clean water and sanitation is an impossibility for these people and has therefore a tremendous consequence on morbidity and mortality.

Safe drinking water is fundamental to healthy lives and prosperous communities.  Every person needs at least twenty liters of water per day for drinking and sanitation needs alone.  Yet nearly a billion people world-wide do not have access to drinking water from an improved source, and more than 2.5 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation for adequate disposal of human waste.  This leads to greater illness and lives cut short.  
According to the WHO, each year, an estimated four billion people get sick with diarrhea as a result of drinking unsafe water, inadequate sanitation, and poor hygiene.  Nearly two million people die from diarrhea each year, and many of them children under the age of five, poor, and living in the developing world.

The ONU wants to focus international attention on the impact of rapid urban population growth.  Half of humanity now lives in cities and this creates unprecedented challenges.  As populations and industry expand, they contribute new sources of pollution and increased demand for clean water.  Safe drinking water is fundamental to healthy lives and prosperous communities, but a lack of safe drinking water and sanitation results in faecal-oral diseases such as diarrhoea and outbreaks of malaria and cholera.  The Vedic style of living always kept an ecological balance, which was achieved through the harmonic relationship between human settlements, forests and water resources.

Vrajbhumi, the region around Vrindavan, always had a very good environmental balance, following the traditional pattern of Hindu India. ... Another essential part of the traditional ecology of the villages is the water tank, or reservoir of rainwater. These tanks vary in size from small ponds to large lakes of up to four acres excavated to a depth of twenty feet or more, with steps built into their sides for access. They are situated in the natural depressions in the ground, where they can best receive the surface rainwater. Most tanks contain one to four bore-holes, depending on the tank’s size, to feed surplus rainwater down to the underlying ground water. In this way every year the abundance of monsoon rain is captured and the ground water replenished to ensure a constant supply of sweet water.

Ranchor Prime (Śrīpad Ranchor Dasa) :
“Hinduism & Ecology - Seeds of Truth”  
Chapter 3 : “Forest Splendour”
Friends of Vrindavan (FOV) - WWF  

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