Global water shortage debated
Scotland can help other countries to manage their scarce water resources more effectively, Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure and Capital Investment Alex Neil said today.
International experts from Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas are in Glasgow for the Global Water Scarcity Conference.
One in eight of the world’s population do not have access to clean water and 2.5 billion live without basic sanitation.
Climate change and population pressures will lead to an estimated 30 per cent increase in demand for fresh water, in just 20 years.
Mr Neil said:
"The world is waking up to the critical importance of water and to its scarcity in many places. As the world’s food demand grows, water availability becomes even more critical.
"As an ambitious Hydro Nation boasting world-leading knowledge and technology, Scotland is well placed to bring our expertise to bear for the benefit of the global community.
"Scotland has taken a leading position in tackling climate change. Our commitment to the low carbon economy is based on environmental and clean technology.
"Scotland can grow its own water sector and it could help many other countries to manage their water resources more effectively. Protecting and improving their fresh water provision could help boost their economic growth."
Nick Lyth, Director of conference hosts, International Resources and Recycling Institute, said:
"With participants from ten countries around the world, including Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas, there was a remarkable degree of unanimity on the single most important target- education and communication.
"We cannot change bad habits in water usage, treatment and recycling without global users understanding and implementing better practice based on sound science.
"Scotland and Scottish expertise is well placed to be an international centre and influencer for change for the better across the globe. We believe the Scottish Government is well placed to lead this process."
- For more information about the conference please call May East on 07717222454.
- The following organisations are co-operators and supporters in the delivery of this major international conference: International Recycling & Resources Institute, CIFAL Scotland, United Nations Institute of Training & Research (UNITAR), The Chartered Institute of Water & Environmental Management (CIWEM), David Livingstone Centre for Sustainability, University of Strathclyde, with the support of the Scottish Government and Scottish Water.