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Preventing water crises
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Preventing water crises

A Brussels icon has become symbol of saving water

We must act responsibly to protect our waters, as increasing pollution is jeopardising our dwindling stores of freshwater. The famous Manneken Pis statue in Brussels has now gone on strike: it will no longer pee fresh water, so as to save water and to focus attention on the tremendous quantity of drinking water we waste each and every day.

Officials of the city were surprised to learn recently that the popular statue has been peeing 1,000 to 2,500 litres of drinking water straight into the sewers. A channel was then constructed to gather the water and send it back to the statue.

Régis Callens, a local energy technician discovered that the statue was wasting drinking water that would be sufficient to supply ten households.

“We thought it was a closed circuit and that he wasn’t consuming anything,” said Callens, who looked at data from a water meter installed on the statue which nobody had paid any attention to previously.
A channel has been put in place to return water to the statue, and a permanent circuit will be fitted at
a later date to circulate all the water the statue uses.

The popular fountain with a 61 cm naked little boy is the work of the baroque sculptor Jérôme Duquesnoy, and one of the popular tourist attractions of the Belgian capital. The original, made in 1619, is now in a Brussels museum, and a copy is in place next to the Grand Place, in the mediaeval centre of the Belgian capital – we learnt on The Guardian website.

From now on, Manneken Pis will not waste drinking water Photo: Shutterstock
Further information: The Guardian

European farming could suffer 16 percent loss by 2050 due to climate change

A comprehensive report by the European Environment Agency claims that over the next 30 years, agricultural yields could drop by up to 16 percent in Europe due to the phenomena accompanying climate change.

One of the driest and warmest summers in Germany

This year’s was the third hottest summer in Germany since the beginning of regular meteorological records in 1881, according to preliminary data from the Federal Meteorological Service.

Sad pictures of a lake that disappears in Chile

In 2011, Laguna de Aculeo, one of the country’s favourite bathing resorts, still covered 12 square kilometres, and the lake was 6 metres deep – but since then, it has completely dried out.

One billion tonnes of carbon dioxide released into the air in Africa

The problem of the water shortages caused by global warming is much more complex than we have thought. In some parts of Africa, people not only need to face thirst but also the fact that the regions impacted by drought emit a quantity of carbon dioxide equivalent to the emissions of two hundred million cars each year.

UN report: climate change could cause global famine

According to a new report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that focuses on the interaction between climate change, desertification and food security, if present land use habits are maintained, the planet’s capacity to produce food will drop drastically.

European Union aid for drought-stricken Africa

The EU is contributing a further 50 million euro to alleviate drought damage in a number of Eastern and Central African countries. According to estimates, more than 4 million children and about 3 million pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers are undernourished in the region.

Seventeen countries suffer critical water shortages

According to a report from the World Resources Institute, 17 countries are facing extremely high water stress, from India through Israel to Botswana. Many of the countries in question – which, collectively, are home to a quarter of the world’s population – are in the Middle East and North Africa.

Zimbabwe hit by power outages due to drought

Drought in the South African country that largely relies on hydroelectric power is causing not only shortages of drinking water but also power outages of up to 16 hours a day in the capital.

The endangered Nile

The water yield of the River Nile is becoming increasingly erratic as a result of climate change, which may have very grave consequences for Egypt.

India among the countries worst affected by global warming

Unprecedented droughts, heat waves claiming more than a hundred lives: the summer of 2019 has made it clear for the whole world that India is in big trouble. How will climate change shape the future of the country?

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