Today is the World Water Day 2022 focused on groundwater. Yesterday, was launched the UN World Water Development Report 2022 “Groundwater – making the invisible visible” at the opening ceremony of the 9th World Water Forum in Dakar, Senegal.
The World Water Day has been proposed at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, 1992 and adopted by the General Assembly shortly thereafter. Since its introduction, the World Water Day represents the opportunity for member states, NGOs, water distributors, cities and citizens to draw our attention to critical water issues and to share knowledge and concerns with all water users. A core focus of the World Water Day is to support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030.
The this year’s focus on groundwater is certainly an excellent opportunity for all hydrologists to think about their role in preserving this precious resource and about how we can contribute to raise awareness and share knowledge about the invisible, which is under ever increasing pressure, especially also in European cities, in the context of growing use of the subsurface for energy extraction and storage.
In Switzerland for example, 80 % of the drinking water is groundwater – a fact that most citizens tend to forget- and knowledge about how our daily activities endanger this resource is certainly largely missing.
While I am writing this, I am on my way to my next lecture on the urban water cycle. An excellent opportunity to talk with my first year geography students about the role of groundwater in cities.