The Co-Executive Director at Minority Rights Group, Madam Claire Thomas, says the water crisis is not just about climate change as most decision-makers want the world to believe.
According to her water crisis abounds because most state authorities are making short-term and self-interested decisions. Saying those taking these life-affecting decisions often choose profit over equity, exclusion of key actors, and or without a sustainability plan.
Madam Thomas said this during the online lunch of a report by the Minority Rights Group (MRG).
The Co-Executive Director at Minority Rights Group, explained that the solution to the water crisis the world is facing is to listen to the minorities’ voices and learning from them on how to live in the environment in harmony.
The report titled: Minority and Indigenous Trends Report 2023: People – Process – Planet,’ the report reveals human activities that have led to disruptions in the global water cycle, leading to enormous consequences to millions of people.
The 280 -page report highlighted the effect of lack of water on minority communities, who bear the brunt of the fallout. It also takes an indebt look at the linkage of the situation to colonialism, which led to the global commercialization and predation of water and exposes how it’s used as a weapon for the marginalization of minority groups.
The 280-page report also looks at a range of topics affecting minorities globally. It again focuses on the ongoing global water crisis which had become critical challenges that is facing humanity, like climate change, biodiversity loss and food insecurity and explores human rights implications of collapsing water systems.
The report contain three in-depth chapters, 35 case studies detailing the 10 most pressing intersectional aspects of the global water crisis, like access, sanitation, pollution, floods, drought, infrastructure, conflict, usage, governance and culture.
It highlights how systemic discrimination has left many minority and indigenous communities with precarious access to safe drinking water as governments and private water companies fail to invest enough resources in the areas where they live, even when they often face displacement by these water infrastructure projects that do not benefit them.
It further highlights that many minority and indigenous populations bear the brunt of water-related disasters, such as floods and drought, while facing exclusion in the emergency relief efforts that follow. And also touched on the indigenous peoples’ deep spiritual connections to the waters on their traditional lands and their centuries’ long experience of managing water sources render them especially vulnerable when these interlink ages are disrupted.
The report brings together voices and knowledge systems of over 35 indigenous and minority wisdom keepers at planetary level, for real and effective action against the water crisis.
It entails a ‘Pledge’ written by Rajendra Singh, known as the waterman of India, who restored the climate of Rajasthan using the traditional system of Jodahs, as well as a piece by world renowned water activist Vandana Shiva.
The foreword is written by UN Special rapporteur on Water, Pedro Arrojo-Agudo.
Madam Claire Thomas said the write-ups offer several recommendations for governments, corporations and international organisations such as UN agencies to consider as a matter of urgency to address this issues.
She noted that the collapse of the hydrological system is imminent unless the world listens to minority and indigenous people as part of efforts to redress the ongoing global water crisis.
By: Hagar Sey, Obonu FM