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Changing Comsumption Patterns in Human Settlements: Water Management

Did you know?

World water demand by the turn of the century is likely to reach almost half of the total global runoff water annually available. By then, 21 ten-million-plus metropolises the world over will have to draw fresh water from sources further away or by pumping deeper with adverse environmental effects. Yet, the efficiency of water use remains abysmally low. An estimated 60 per cent of irrigation water is lost even before it ever reaches a plant. In cities, more than one-thirds of the treated water never reaches the customer because of wastage and leakage. This situation cannot continue if development and the environment are to sustain. Demand management through economic, technical and educational means could greatly improve the efficiency of water use and reduce consumption.

7 good ways to reduce water consumption in cities

  1. Introduce water metering and a tariff policy which is fair and which encourages conservation
  2. Promote the use of water and sanitary fittings which reduce water usage'
  3. Initiate a leak detection and repair programme within the city
  4. Encourage water recycling in industries to reduce pressure on freshwater
  5. Explore the possibility of reusing treated wastewater for crop production and fish farming
  6. Engage the public through appropriate "save water" campaigns through local leaders
  7. Ensure that school children develop respect for water

UNCHS (HABITAT) Settlement Infrastructure and Environment Programme (SIEP)
P.O. Box 30030, Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254-2-623781, Fax: +254-2-624265, Email:
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Contact: Hari Srinivas -