A Call for Personal Responsibility in Water Usage and Conservation

As we celebrate World Water Day, 2024, the theme “Water for Prosperity and Peace” resonates with us as Kenyans. Communities in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) in Kenya are struggling to recover from five consecutive seasons of below-average rainfall despite the right to clean, safe and adequate water being a constitutional right.

Since our independence, we have made significant strides in addressing water management issues. Efforts have been made to improve infrastructure, monitor pollution, and regulate water resources. However, challenges persist, particularly in rural and underserved areas, where access to clean water is still a daily struggle. It is high time that every individual recognizes they play a crucial role in addressing these challenges even as we look to the government to ensure equitable access to water for all its citizens.

The responsibility to conserve and use water wisely falls on each one of us. The following simple yet impactful practices can make a significant difference in water conservation efforts.

1. Harvesting rainwater for household use or recharge of groundwater supplies can alleviate pressure on existing water sources during dry spells especially with erratic weather patterns becoming increasingly common.

2. Recycling water for non-potable purposes like irrigation or cleaning, instead of letting it run down the drain.

3. Curbing domestic and industrial water pollution that contaminates our water bodies. Protecting our rivers, lakes and aquifers is essential for ensuring clean water for future generations.

4. Planting trees, especially in water catchment areas helps replenish groundwater sources and preserves the ecological balance crucial for water sustainability.

5. Making small contributions towards community-based water projects such as boreholes, wells and pans.

“Together, we can ensure that the fundamental human right to clean water is upheld for all.”

As we reflect on World Water Day, let us support initiatives aimed at providing clean water to underserved communities that can make a tangible difference in improving livelihoods and fostering sustainable development.

Today we join the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops in their 2024 Lenten campaign in rallying the country towards ensuring access to enough, clean, and affordable water for all.

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Together, we can ensure that the fundamental human right to clean water is upheld for all.