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Ann Thomas

Nature Calls – why sanitation is the logical starting point for fighting climate change

  11. June 2024    1457

In September 2021, Hurricane Ida dropped more than six inches of rain on New York City in a matter of hours. Roughly half of that rainfall, 3.15 inches, fell within the first hour—nearly twice the rate the city’s infrastructure was designed to handle. 

At 11am that day, I got a call from my daughter’s school in the outskirts of the NYC metropolitan area asking me to collect my daughter ASAP. The school basement was filling with water … fast. By the end of the day, the school was shuttered, and the surrounding community evacuated. Meanwhile, outside my front door in suburban New York, neighbours were piling the contents of their basements onto the sidewalk. ‘The neighbourhood’s shit is in my basement!’ one exclaimed. Social media was filled with discordant images of flooded streets and Teslas floating through them.

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Jeremy Kohlitz, Kaiea Ribanataake Awira, Ngaouea Neemia

Can Kiritimati become a model circular economy society? Water and sanitation as potential entry points

  7. May 2024    2268

Kiritimati Island is a unique place. Situated within the Line Islands group of the Republic of Kiribati, an island country spanning almost 3.5 million km2 of ocean, it isn’t easy to find on a map. The closest international airport (other than its own) is in Honolulu – more than 2,000 km away. The capital of its own country is even farther away. Despite being  the largest coral atoll in the world, as of 2020 only 7,369 people live there.

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Anne Fetscher, Jörg Felmeden

The sustainable use of tap water (in Germany) and the power of education. An Interview with Dr.-Ing. Jörg Felmeden

  24. January 2024    1780

Water is the condition for (a healthy) life, which is why access to clean tap water and sanitation has been included as one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Agenda 2030, the international agreement for global development. In a global comparison, Germany is very well positioned, but we increasingly have to deal with issues such as water pollution and - due to the increasing impacts of climate change - water scarcity too. In reference to sanitation in Germany, the main question we have to ask ourselves is how we can use our tap water as economically as possible. Because of its outstanding quality in Germany it should end up in the Germans' stomachs rather than in their toilets.

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Climate Resilient Sanitation Coalition (CRSC)

Getting sanitation back on the (global) agenda

  28. November 2023    1769

Despite the proven impact and interrelationship between sanitation and climate change, sanitation is still not part of the climate conversation. It must be, not only to ensure the resilience of the infrastructure, communities and the ecosystems which we depend on in the face of a global climate emergency, but also to harness effective and under-utilised greenhouse gas mitigation possibilities. 

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