This is my response to ISKI’s call for water conservation.



I was angered when the Istanbul Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (İSKİ) sent a text message to its subscribers urging them to save water. Despite the fact that in such a populous metropolis there is such poverty, and besides, thirst and water cuts, especially women’s lives – ensuring the hygiene of family members and at home with water collected in a tub and buckets, washing vegetables and fruits well (not enough, they are kept in acetic water ), cooking, dishes, etc. It is not difficult to guess how difficult it will be to wash clothes, and, in addition, this can have dangerous consequences for public health (for example, (cholera, dysentery, epidemics of lice).

But it was the ISK call that worried me, not the possible water shutdowns. At first glance, there are no problems with the text, the language is attentive, polite. You can read it here.


But “We can only get through this difficult period with the help of individual water savings” I’m stuck on this suggestion. Besides hiding the fact that we are on the verge of a water crisis caused by climate change due to global warming, and which cannot be overcome with individual savings, this approach equates every Istanbul resident to every person in terms of the amount of water they receive. usage is incorrect. The rich consume many times more water than the poor, those who live in villas with pools and/or gardens, those who huddle in neighboring apartments, those who wash their cars every day than those who practice using public transport.

The scientific data doesn’t say so.

For this reason, in April Sustainable development of nature I would like to share the results of scientific research published in the journal. I hope that İSKI and İBB officials will also read and consider them.

Initially, the researchers note that the huge difference in water consumption between rich and poor citizens has been largely ignored in the search for solutions to the problem of water scarcity, instead focusing on attempts to increase the supply and raise the price of water. However, the only way to protect water resources is a more equal redistribution of water resources.

The study focused on the example of the city of Cape Town in South Africa and conducted simulations that used data on water consumption by income groups. According to this, water consumption by the city’s richest residents – 14 percent of the total urban population – corresponds to 51 percent of total consumption, while the share of the poorest 62 percent of the population remained at 27 percent. As you can imagine, most of the water used by rich people went to secondary needs: swimming pools, gardens, brand new cars.

This modeling, which can also be applied to other cities, also shows that changes in water use by the richest group have a larger impact on overall water availability than population changes or droughts associated with the climate crisis. The researchers also say that in times of famine, rich people drilled private wells, which led to a significant reduction in groundwater resources. Finally, after several years of drought, when Cape Town ran out of water in 2018, the poorest sections of the population were deprived of water for their most basic needs.

Recalling that since 2000, more than 80 major cities such as Cape Town, including Miami, Melbourne, London, Barcelona, ​​Sao Paulo, Beijing, Bangalore and Harare, have faced severe drought and water shortages, scientists said that urban crises with water He predicts that in the near future we will face more and more problems and that more than 1 billion citizens will have difficulty accessing water. In fact, a report prepared by the Global Water Commission in March concluded that global water demand will exceed supply by 40 percent by 2030.

One of the authors of the study on the water crisis in cities on the example of Cape Town, prof. Hannah Cloke, in an interview with the Guardian, emphasizes that water is becoming an increasingly valuable resource in big cities due to climate change and population growth, but social and economic inequality is a bigger issue in terms of access to water for the daily needs of the population. poor: “Our projections for the future show that the crisis will deepen as the gap between rich and poor widens in many parts of the world. But if we don’t develop ways to distribute water more equitably in cities, eventually everyone will suffer the consequences.”

We are talking about a natural resource, which is our most basic need for life. But we don’t have fair access either when drinking or when drinking. Why do we have to pay extra for drinking water? Why can’t we drink tap water like we do in London? Or, as in Sydney – you can also drink tap water there – why are there no rules and restrictions on the use of the city network for secondary needs such as watering gardens, filling swimming pools, washing cars? Are we expected to recognize that those who consume less and those who consume more are equated with sacrifice?

If not now, then when? With local elections approaching, it’s time to discuss how we will share this critical natural resource.

Source link

Leave a Comment