Pope: Earth’s water must be protected, available to everyone – The Washington Post

The Washington Post: VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis is encouraging the world to ensure its water supplies are protected and available to all.

Francis noted the United Nations was marking Sunday as an occasion to draw attention to water’s importance.

He quoted St. Francis of Assisi, who inspired his choice of name as pope, in praising water for its usefulness and purity.

Francis intends to detail his views on the environment soon in an encyclical, a Vatican position paper reserved for important matters.

Speaking to the public in St. Peter’s Square, the pope called water “the most essential element for life” and said “humanity’s future depends on our ability to care for it and share it.”

He encouraged governments to ensure that water supplies are protected and accessible to all.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

via Pope: Earth’s water must be protected, available to everyone – The Washington Post.

Focus On Energy and Water As Global Leaders Gather In Stockholm – GLOBE-Net

Stockholm August 27, 2014 – Over 2,500 politicians, business leaders, innovators, thought leaders and practitioners are set to meet in Stockholm in a few days, for the 24th annual World Water Week.

This year’s focus is on energy and water, two resources that are inseparable from sustainable development and therefore must be tirelessly promoted in global decision-making.

In over 100 seminars, workshops and events spread throughout the 31 August-5 September World Water Week, delegates will discuss ongoing and future work and collaboration between the energy and water communities, essential if we are to successfully meet some of the biggest challenges of our time, such as providing clean water and energy for a growing world population.

Water and energy are interdependent in more ways than not. We need energy for pumping, storing, transporting and treating water, we need water for producing almost all sorts of energy.

An increase or decrease in one will immediately affect the other.

To feed into discussions at the Week, SIWI has just released two must-read reports: the arguments for tighter links between the two communities are explored in “Energy and Water: The Vital Link for a Sustainable Future”.

One energy field that has been hotly debated in recent years is hydraulic fracturing for shale gas, commonly known as “fracking”.

In “Shale Gas and Hydraulic Fracturing: Framing the Water Issue”, fracking and its impact on freshwater is critically assessed by leading researchers in the field. At World Water Week, the main global annual forum for water and water-related issues, ministers and high-level government officials will be joined this year by CEOs, scientists, heads of UN bodies and participants from over 270 convening organizations and more than 130 countries.

Speakers at the opening session on Monday September 1 include Mr. Torgny Holmgren, SIWI’s Executive Director, Ms. Hillevi Engström, Sweden’s Minister for Development Cooperation, Ms. Edna Molewa, Minister of Environmental Affairs, South Africa, Dr. John Briscoe, 2014 Stockholm Water Prize Laureate, Dr. Kandeh Yumkella, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, CEO Sustainable Energy for All, Ms. Anita Marangoly George, Senior Director, Energy and Extractives at the World Bank, Dr. Junaid Ahmad, Senior Director, Global Water Practice at the World Bank, Ms. Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Director General of IUCN, Ms. Héloise Chicou, AGWA, French Water Partnership. Mr. Sten Nordin, Mayor of Stockholm, and Ms. Karin Lexén, director of World Water Week.

During the Week, the prestigious Stockholm Water Prize will be awarded to Prof. John Briscoe of South Africa, for his unparalleled contributions to global and local water management, inspired by an unwavering commitment to improving the lives of people on the ground.

The prize will be awarded to Prof. Briscoe by H.M. Carl XVI Gustaf, King of Sweden, during a ceremony in Stockholm City Hall on Thursday 4th September.

Other prizes that will be presented are the Stockholm Industry Water Award, which will be awarded, on Tuesday 2nd September, to eThekwini Water and Sanitation serving the Durban Metropolitan Area, for its transformative and inclusive approach to providing water and sanitation services, and the Stockholm Junior Water Prize which, on Wednesday 3rd September, is given to one national team from 29 competing nations by H.R.H. Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden.

GLOBE-Net readers are urged to look at the in depth report prepared by the Stockholm International Water Institute, SIWI Energy and Water: The Vital Link for a Sustainable Future.

The Online program for the World Water Week in Stoickholm is available here

via GLOBE-Net Focus On Energy and Water As Global Leaders Gather In Stockholm – GLOBE-Net.

A life of activism gives you hope, energy and direction | rabble.ca

Maude Barlow received an Honorary Doctor of Laws from York University in Toronto yesterday morning. Here are her speaking notes for the Convocation ceremony.Chancellor Gregory Sorbara, President Mamdouh Shoukri, the Senate of York University, and all the graduation students, It is a great honour to share this convocation with you today. I am moved by your grace, energy and hope on this lovely June day.In the few minutes I have to share with you I would like to urge you all, no matter what your education specialty, what vocation you choose, or where you live, to give some of your precious life energy to the great environmental challenges that face us today.

….

via A life of activism gives you hope, energy and direction | rabble.ca.

The choice of oil or water | The Liberated Way

I discovered two springs in a wood in Hilly Fields, Colchester.  “Safe to drink?” my first reaction to the discovery, a sad reaction to the reality the human race has polluted most fresh water sources in our world.

via The choice of oil or water | The Liberated Way.

The Cleanest Line: The Final Countdown – Kiwis Organizing Against Seabed Mining in New Zealand

The Final Countdown

There’s a sharp crack as another four-foot wave hits the shallow boulder/sand reef and rifles off down the line, little explosions of whitewater glistening in the morning sun every few meters as some lucky local tears the smooth wall to pieces. Standing over the action, its deep valleys and high ridges cloaked in a thick dark green forest, lies Mount Karioi.

This is the area known as Raglan, on the North Island of New Zealand’s west coast. The skies are clear and blue, the air so fresh it lifts me up with each breath. The sun, the waves, the bush-clad mountain behind me, the scent of the forest gently drifting down on the offshore breeze, at this moment I feel like there is nowhere else in the world I’d rather be.

Looking out to sea, waiting for the next set, a deep sense of calm settles over the lineup. As we watch the horizon, we notice some dark figures heading around the point in a lazy manner, appearing and disappearing, in rhythm with the long ocean swells marching towards the coast in perfect unison.

These are the popoto, or Maui’s dolphin, that call this area home. Known for their inquisitive nature and playful disposition, they bring a smile to all who see them glide by. I feel a touch of jealousy as I imagine what it would be like to ride a swell with even half the grace or fluid motion that these beautiful creatures of the sea possess.

via The Cleanest Line: The Final Countdown – Kiwis Organizing Against Seabed Mining in New Zealand.

Shell presses ahead with world’s deepest offshore oil well | Business | The Guardian

Shell presses ahead with world’s deepest offshore oil well | Business | The Guardian.

No end to our insanity in sight? What, after all, could possibly go wrong?

Biodiversity, water and natural resource management – Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

Biodiversity, water and natural resource management – Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

“Price it right, use it well”. From the perspective of market logic, this is the only feasible solution to the looming shortages of fresh water on the planet. Yet the very idea of commodifying the commons, the most basic fundamentals of human rights, is anathema, or should be.  There have to be better solutions and indeed there are. But for them to be inserted at the appropriate levels of infrastructure in ways that will not benefit only the elite and middle class will require more than magic.  It requires the active investment of  time, energy and conscious will of us all.