Sunday, 24 January 2021

UN in your language

Water - DbD

The keys to success

Jens AssurFerah PerkerWe were wondering-what is the key to success in such a competition?

Two of our Drop by Drop competiton jurors shared with us their opinions (A third, European Commissioner Connie Hedegaard answered separately our 3 Questions to…)

Jens Assur, one of Scandinavia´s best known photographers is one of seven jurors. He is known for his work development issues such as "Hunger" a book series published in 2010. While Assur is from Sweden, another juror, the graphic designer Ferah Perker, comes from a different part of Europe: Turkey. While Assur is a photographer/film director; Perker has 19 years experience in graphic design and advertising and has worked as an art director for major network advertising agencies and clients in Turkey.


Drop by drop: Still time to make a difference

DBD logo ENMore than 1,000 submissions have been entered into the “Drop by Drop: the Future we want”, the European Newspaper Ad Competition with about one week until the 29 February deadline to enter the comptetition.

“We are delighted that once again European “artivists” have answered our call, and have by the thousands shown how they care in a creative way, which we hope will inspire people to take action,” says UNRIC Director Afsané Bassir-Pour, the main organizer in partnership with the Brussels Office of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). “But we want more ads and although many of the ads are great, we want even more quality. There is still time to design an ad that can make a difference”

Already submissions have been entered from 40 of the 48 European Countries which are Member States of the UN.


What you eat as important as what you drink

UN-Photo-Kibae-ParkPreservation of water, does that mean we should drink less water? Perhaps that might help, but strange as it seems, giving a thought to what you eat might be more useful. On average each of us drinks 2-4 liters of water every day.


Rio+20 Panel: A more sustainable growth model

RIO +20  logo ENWorld leaders will gather in Rio de Janeiro from 20-22 June this year, at Rio+20 - the UN Conference on Sustainable Development.

Rio+20 will take stock on where the world is now, twenty years after the "Earth Summit" in Rio which gives the 2012 conference its name. However, the organizers emphasize the conference's forward looking character by adding the slogan "The Future We Want."


Making water a human right

UN Photo: Logan-Abassi. A-boy-in-Cité-SoleilIn 2010, the United Nations General Assembly recognized that water and sanitation should be a human right. Water as a human right is as much about the quality, making sure that the water is clean and you do not get sick from drinking it, as it is about access.

As UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has said: "Safe drinking water and adequate sanitation are crucial for poverty reduction, crucial for sustainable development and crucial for achieving any and every one of the Millennium Development Goals".


A Spanish testimony on a threatened “Waterland”

Enrique PachecoEnrique Pacheco says he thinks he was born to be a photographer.

However, there was nothing inevitable about him becoming a photographer who focused on the abundant water resources of a country bordering the Arctic circle. Pacheco was born in Madrid 33 years ago in a country better known for its long dry summers which increasingly result in water scarcity.


Related Links:

cinema icon3 Questions to Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action and Member of the High-level Panel on Sustainable Development.


  • 97 % of earth’s water is in the oceans. Only 3 % of the earth’s water can be used as drinking water. 75 % of the world’s fresh water is frozen in the polar ice caps.

  • 884 million people still do not have access to safe drinking water. However, 1.7 billion have gained such access since 1990.

  • The average distance that women in Africa and Asia walk to collect water is 6 kilometres.

  • 2.6 billion people lack access to basic sanitation services, such as toilets or latrines.

  • Each day 5,000 children die due to preventable water and sanitation-related diseases.

  • Average water use ranges from 200-300 litres a person a day in most countries in Europe to less than 10 litres in countries such as Mozambique

  • People living in the slums of Jakarta, Manila and Nairobi pay 5 to 10 times more for water than those living in high-income areas in those same cities and more than consumers in London or New York.

  • In Manila, the cost of connecting to the utility represents about three months' income for the poorest 20% of households, rising to six months' in urban Kenya.

  • In many places of the world, a staggering 30 to 40% of water or more goes unaccounted for due to water leakages in pipes and canals and illegal tapping.

  • The production of 1 kilogram of:
    o rice requires 3,000 litres of water
    o maize requires 900 litres of water
    o wheat requires 1,350 litres of water
    o beef requires 16,000 litres of water
  • Between now and 2025, it is expected that the world will need 17% more water to grow food for the increasing populations in developing countries and that total water use will increase by some 40%.


1st United Nations World Water Development Report 'Water for People, Water for Life' (WWDR1, 2003),
the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) publication "Global Population and Water: Access and Sustainability"
and NASA Earth Observatory’s The Water Cycle