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World Water Day | The hidden Life of Water: What if There Is Only 100ml Water Left on Earth?


On Mar. 21, with the World Water Day approaching, Philanthropy Forum Solon - "The hidden Life of Water" jointly organized by the Institute, the Beijing Normal University, China Philanthropy Research Institute and the Roca Beijing Art Gallery, was held in Beijing. Fu Changbo, Assistant Dean of the China Global Philanthropy Institute, Wang Limin, Vice Chairman of the Changjiang Conservation Foundation, and ELP Attendant of the China Global Philanthropy Institute, Zhou Jieying, Representative of We Are Water Foundation, Xiong Ying, Academic Director of the Turenscape Academy, and Ren Xiaoyuan, Founder of My H2O Water Information Platform attended the forum, in which on-site exchanges were carried through, covering people's awareness of water, eco-friendly water utilization, urban and rural water concepts, challenges and opportunities of water crisis, information disclosure/sharing, etc. 


Featured with "Leaving no one behind" which is determined by the United Nations, 2019 World Water Day is organized and carried out. "China Water Week" is explicitly advertised as "having priority over water saving, to strengthen water resource management". 


Just imagine that: 


If one day there is no longer any flowing water except reinforced concrete in a city you are familiar with; if one day water is no longer allocated as needed, but becomes a symbol of wealth and power in a city where you live; if one day what we only remember is that water becomes a legend... a human war due to water shortage; Take our Planet and wander in the sky because of lack of water; a sci-fi scene may make it a reality. 


In this Philanthropy Forum Solon, on the basis of "World Water Day", we looked into the future, say 50 years ago, about the current status and strategy of water resources protection, which aims to arouse public awareness of water resources protection. Seeking to meet water demand in people's daily life, business and agriculture, the United Nations has long been committed to addressing the global water crisis caused by increased water demand. 



"There are two issues with water." said Fu Changbo. One is water shortage, and the other is water pollution. Firstly, it is of great significance to raise the concept and perception about water of the public; secondly, the government, market, and society should take relevant measures to change the technical standards in a planned manner at the national level. 


As changes have taken place in national legislation and mandatory standard, it is more important to make a difference in business logic. Every water-consuming industry should be aware of two aspects in its business logic: 

Firstly, if failing to make any change, it will face the punishments by the regulatory authorities; 

Second, if failing to make any change, the social image will be seriously affected, further exerting influences on enterprise development. 


We believe that with the support of the government, business, and society, only the action we take can change the present situation. Action must be taken based on the principles of joint development, co-governance and sharing on all sides. On this very note, guidance and education play the important roles. Mr. Ray Dalio, one of the founders of the Institute, pays close attention to in marine protection. The Institute also plans to have a dialogue with him on the issue this year. 

Fu Changbo, Assistant Dean of China Global Philanthropy Institute 


"Water touches the entire social development system." said Zhou Jieying. 


In combination with sustainable development goals set by the United Nations, it will be found that the water issue is not only involved with Goal 6 Clean Water and Sanitation, but also with other 16 goals, including poverty eradication, sustainable development and community. 


In addition, water conservation shows a strong link with water consumption of the public. Are ordinary consumers willing to pay for water conservation? Well, it is not commonly seen in the real world. In respect of water conservation, public education needs to be strengthened, and magnificent support in legislation provided. If one day there is only 100ml water left on earth, we may suddenly understand water currently at our fingertips is such a precious resource. 

Zhou Jieying, Representative of We Are Water Foundation 


"Water resources in China are confronted with five major challenges." said Wang Limin, an expert on water issues for a long time. 


Firstly, centralized water - two-thirds of water in China is distributed in the south; 


Secondly, smaller volume of water - only one-third of water is distributed in the north, with extremely unbalanced distribution in the north and south; 


Thirdly, clean water - currently, lower reaches of the Yangtze River Basin are clear water, basically free of sediment movement, and the river-bed scour is very deep. As a result, the lake water constantly enters into the sea, and the inland water is seriously washed away; 


Fourthly, muddy water - both human and aquatic creatures like fish can be survived with clean water, otherwise, there will be no fish; 


Fifthly, declining aquatic population - finless porpoise lives in water, and there is a rapid decline in its quantity from 6,000, showing the entire water ecosystem is getting worse. If we pay no attention to nature, it will have far more serious consequences than that. 

Wang Limin, Vice Chairman of the Changjiang Conservation Foundation, and ELP Attendant of the China Global Philanthropy Institute 


From the point of designers, Xiong Ying shared that water resources in China are unevenly distributed, and the rainfall is concentrated mostly in summer when the seasonal flood is frequently incurred. How to retain surface water when there is a lack of water? and how to prevent it from water logging in case of heavy seasonal flood? Government departments should, taking various factors into consideration, make great efforts to jointly work out water issues, from policy setting, theoretical research, to pipeline distribution. The government encourages the sponge city to store the flowing water. For example, if the city leaves 10% to 15% of the public green space for rainwater storage, the supply of landscape water of the whole city can be guaranteed. 

Xiong Ying, Academic Director of the Turenscape Academy 


Ren Xiaoyuan sometimes shares information on water resource in rural areas. Based on the investigation, it was found that some minorities are very respectful of water and have a strong sense of ecological protection. However, people living in cities naively believe that they have sufficient resources, and there is no need to save them. What they only care about is to develop the technology. As the technology advances, we no longer show more respect to nature. In addition, SEE is gleaning data about enterprises who are involved with environmental pollution in all provinces to uncover violations of rules and regulations. We can see that more and more people are trying hard to speed up environmental protection, and more improvements and actions have been made at least in data disclosure of black and odorous water and county-level water source spots. 

Ren Xiaoyuan, founder of My H2O Water Information Platform 


According to the United Nations World Water Development Report 2018, there is currently nearly half of the world population (about 3.6 billion) suffering lack of water at least one month per year. By 2050, there are likely 5.7 billion people encountering the same issue.


The "United Nations Water Conference" held in 1977 issued a dire warning to the world: water will be a profound social crisis after the oil crisis. Participants and spectators should keep an eye on joint actions of the government, enterprises, social organizations and the media, so as to accelerate the standard introduction to water at the national level. 


Mr. Fu Changbo hopes that water without any purification facilities can be drinkable in 50 years; Ms. Zhou Jieying expects that every corner of the world can enjoy the pleasure brought by "water balance"; Mr. Wang Limin looks ahead that water in the city will not come from the faucet but from the rivers; Ms. Xiong Ying wishes that green mountains and rivers remain unchanged; Ms. Ren Xiaoyuan encourages all of us can understand water and solve water issues better. 

Site of Philanthropy Forum Solon 



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