On World Water Day 2012 (22nd of March) the United Nations awarded two environmental organisations with a "Water for Life" award for their efforts to improve water management in their region. Both ENDS' partner Environment Support Group (ESG) received an award in category 1 for "Best water management practices", for a project on protecting the Bangalore lakes in India. A second award was handed out to Soluciones Simples Que Salvan Vidas (Sodis) for developing new communication strategies to improve water management in Bolivia.
"This is a turning point in global water management," said Both ENDS colleague Tobias Schmitz. He was in Geneva for a UN meeting on the future of water management or ‘the world after 2015’, when the term for the current Millennium Development Goals has passed. The conference had a special focus on the management of water resources and of waste water. We asked Tobias why he was attending the meeting and what were – and should be- the main issues in his view.
“I will not go!” Sena Alouka yells in the bus along the highway as we pass a desolate farm that is totally surrounded by bulldozers and soil that has been turned and ploughed. A familiar sight for most of the riders in the bus, which includes nine Africans, an Indonesian and a handful of Dutch people. Evictions and land expropriations are an almost daily occurrence in Africa and Indonesia. And then the whole group spontaneously chants: “I will not go! We will support you!”