Friday, April 3, 2009

Report from the World Water Forum, Istanbul, April 2009

(click on image to see source geotech article)

By Jeff Conant at Alternet:

If we learned anything from the World Water Forum it should be that the privatization model has failed and a grassroots movement is needed:

"On the last day of the Forum I spoke at length with a reporter from Agence France Press who had come to look for stories of appropriate technology and small-scale, community-driven development -- of rainwater catchment and ecological sanitation and village-level water purification and the revival of traditional water management strategies. He didn't find them. So I pointed him to Rajendra Singh, of Rajasthan, India, whose work with villagers over three decades brought seven rivers back to life. "We learned to value traditional knowledge," says Rajendra, "where knowledge is shared for the good of all people and not for the good of some people to keep others down. Knowledge of the land's contours, of the land's capacity to hold water, and of the people's capacity to manage it -- geo-cultural knowledge. So, we have revived seven rivers in Rajasthan with the participation of people who were thought of as poor, as illiterate -- and this not only brought the rivers back; it has brought back the meaning to their lives."

I've outlined a local strategy on my November post. This is a method implemented by strategies developed by North East Trees and the Green Street model.