Sanitation with added value – GIZ leads the way out of the water crisis

Offer of an interview for World Water Week (25 to 30 August)

Today, 2.3 billion people already live in areas suffering permanent water scarcity. Representatives from 127 countries – including the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH – will be discussing possible ways forward at the World Water Week, being staged from 25 to 30 August in Stockholm. 

Between 2015 and 2017 alone, GIZ and its partners and clients provided better access to drinking water for 17.5 million people worldwide. Over the same period, sanitation was improved for 11 million people, making a major contribution to fighting the water crisis. Contamination of the water that is needed for our survival is one of the largest causes of water scarcity.

Worldwide, more than 80 per cent of wastewater is discharged untreated into the environment, while at least 1,000 children die every day as a result of diarrhoea caused by contaminated water and a lack of hygiene. How can we manage to protect scarce water resources – especially in places with no electric power? 

This is where GIZ comes in, with its Sanitation for Millions project. GIZ is helping build sanitation facilities to prevent water contamination and thus reduce health risks. In Jordan, Uganda and Pakistan, GIZ has given over 200,000 people access to safe sanitation since 2016. 

Schools are a special focus, because students in almost one quarter of schools worldwide have no opportunity to go to the toilet, with girls particularly badly affected. In Pakistan, for example, GIZ is helping build suitable sanitation facilities, to enable girls to continue their education. 

How can sanitation help combat water scarcity? How does it help mitigate climate change? What role does water play in preventing conflicts? What innovative solutions help protect water, a resource essential for our survival? And how does this create jobs?

The Head of the Sustainable Water Policy Programme, Ulrike Pokorski da Cunha, will be answering these and other questions on 27 and 28 August 2019.