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Showing posts from November 30, 2008

Using Water To Understand Human Society

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Using Water To Understand Human Society

Some of the greatest societies would not have lasted as long as they did without water and the use of it in their infrastructures, agriculture, and traditions. The one that first comes to my mind is Ancient Rome. Their intricate and brilliant aqueduct system (though built through plundering Gaul and Britain) was an engineering marvel that rivaled and even surpassed water systems of today. Even the Roman baths were well known historically for their influence on social mores.

The Great Pyramids of Egypt would not have been built without the access to the Nile River. The Nile, the Amazon, the Ganges, even the Hudson and Mississippi Rivers here in the US have all had an influence on life as we now know it. Trade would also not have been possible from early centuries to current times had it not been for the access to water. Water has been instrumental in the economic and environmental lives of people for many centuries.

It is then about time that water…

Access to water must be high on climate agenda

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Access to water must be high on climate agenda

Access to water is a basic human right and should be high on the agenda of climate change talks in Poland next week, the head of an Italian advocacy group said on Friday.

With more than 1 billion people having no access to safe water, the World Water Contract group for years has sought to make availability of water a basic right and add it to the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

"Given that water is threatened by climate change, it is time to include the human right to water in (the new climate) protocol," Emilio Molinari, chairman of the group's Italian branch, told Reuters on the margins of a water conference.

Molinari said his group would lobby the United Nations to add water access rights to the climate change debate next week in Poznan, Poland.

About 190 countries will meet there to lay the groundwork for a global deal to succeed the Kyoto Protocol after 2012.

Molinari said his non-profit organisation would try…