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UN WWDR Report 2021 underlines decrease of Per Capita Reservoir Capacity of Water

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Every person may have to live on less water as per capita reservoir capacity decreasesAccording to the 2021 edition of the United Nations World Water Development Report (UN WWDR 2021) titled ‘Valuing Water’, Each person on the planet may have to live on less Water as per capita reservoir capacity is decreasing.

  • The World population is set to increase to 9 Billion by 2040, but the projected reservoir volume is stabilising around 7, 000 billion cubic metre.
  • This report published by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on behalf of UN-Water.
  • The production of the report is coordinated by UNESCO World Water Assessment Programme(WWAP).

Key Points

  • As per the report, the world’s 400 river basins identified water shortage risks in parts of Africa, Australia, Northern China, India, Spain & Western parts of the USA.
  • Average annual storage volume losses equal about 1% of total Built reservoir capacity, the estimated costs for restoring the losses were approximately USD 13 Billion per year.
  • Independent assessments state that the world will face a Global Water Deficit of 40% by 2030.
  • The report estimates that 140 Low and Middle-income countries need to spend $114 billion per year to access safe drinking water and sanitation.

Causes of Low Reservoir Expansion

  • Sedimentation was one of the main reasons for decrease in the storage capacity of existing reservoirs.
  • Artificial lakes & reservoirs suffered significant losses from increased evaporation compared to original rivers.

Alternatives proposed by authors of the study

  • Recognising the value of reducing demand
  • Increasing supply through measures like improved land management or water reuse.
  • Using Decentralised solutions
  • ‘Conjunctive use’ of natural systems.

Recent Related News:

i.November 3, 2020, In accordance with the WWF Water Risk Filter, an online tool nearly a third of the 100 cities in the world susceptible to “water risk” are in India means 30 Indian cities are expected to suffer increased water risks by 2050.

About UN-Water:

Chair – Gilbert F. Houngbo
Headquarters – Geneva, Switzerland