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Tackling global water issues

Published: 25 Jan 2017 11:20

£500,000 for safe and clean water for Malawi.

People living in Malawi’s second largest city of Blantyre will be able to access better quality water that is cleaner and safer to drink, thanks to a Scottish Government investment.

The £500,000 funding through the Climate Justice Fund will enhance and speed up the delivery of a water supply project that is currently underway in southern Malawi, and extend it to cover surrounding districts.

The funding will also support the testing of deep water well technology and other innovative ways of tackling global water issues. 

Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Climate Change Roseanna Cunningham announced funding for the Malawi Water Futures Project, at a meeting of the Hydro Nation Forum in Glasgow. She said:

“Access to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation is a fundamental human right and this funding will help improve the supply of water for people living in Blantyre in Malawi.

“We know that the most vulnerable are worst affected by climate change: the very young, the very old, the ill, and the very poor. It is unacceptable that the people who have done least to cause climate change are the ones being hit the hardest.

“This funding underlines our long-standing partnership with Malawi and shows how Scotland is contributing to the UN’s Global Goals including supporting people to access clean water and sanitation.

“We are doing what we can to support these vulnerable communities through our Climate Justice Fund and are working to develop and promote more efficient water use through our Hydro Nation agenda, as everyone should have access to safe, clean drinking water.”

Background

The Climate Justice Fund was launched in 2012 with an initial £6 million from the Hydro Nation budget supporting projects in Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania and Rwanda focused around water rights and water management. Between 2016 and 2020 £12 million will be available through the Climate Justice Fund.

UN’s new Global Goals, making Scotland one of the first nations on earth to commit to the Goals.  The Climate Justice Fund and the Hydro Nation agenda are expected to actively support the achievement of the Goals going forward.  The Malawi Water Futures Project and additional funding specifically address Goal 6 on access to clean water and sanitation.

The Malawi Water Futures programme has already delivered a full district survey and is  progressing through the next six districts out of 28 in total.  The programme has provided extensive training to the key water management stakeholders in Malawi and is working closely with local communities to both understand and to then improve water and sanitation provision. The programme allows Scotland to play a leading role in the delivery of Goal 6 in Malawi by 2030.

The additional funding will be allocated largely to the urban and peri urban areas of Blantyre in Southern Malawi both mapping and improving water supplies

The Hydro Nation  Forum, chaired by Ms Cunningham is the high-level advisory group made up of water industry leaders and academic experts, who advise the Scottish Government on the Hydro Nation Strategy.