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According to an international environmental watchdog, freshwater is the lifeblood of the planet. The same non-government organization made the assertion that no one can survive without it. Freshwater is mankind’s source of food, health, and energy. Access to freshwater sources is the main reason for the establishment of civilizations. In the present time, urban centers require a sustainable supply of freshwater to ensure socioeconomic development. It is therefore important to learn how how to apply sustainable strategies in water quality control.
Promoting Positive Behavior 2 Strategies
There are numerous strategies that governments and local organizations can implement in order to enhance the impact of water quality initiatives. First, the importance of quality control must be disseminated through the education of the younger generation. The second strategy is to establish local initiatives that in turn will monitor the quality of water in a certain area.
With regards to the first strategy, it is important to touch the hearts and minds of the next generation’s leaders and policy makers. Present problems with regards to ineffective policies are usually the result of ineffective policies generated by uninformed policy makers. The root cause of the problem can be traced back to influential leaders occupying key positions in government. It may be difficult to change their mindset with regards to their view regarding water conservation. However, it is easier to influence next generation’s leaders concerning their roles in water conservation and water quality control. It is important that children and teenagers understand their individual roles in transforming the environment.
Educated people will undoubtedly contribute to the creation of policies that will safeguard rivers, ponds, lakes and storage reservoirs. However, their contribution will go beyond the political sphere. They will not only contribute to affect the political aspect in the struggle to improve water quality control measures. They are going to transform water quality control through the creation of new technology, and the development of ideas that will directly impact efforts in water quality control initiatives. They are the inventors and radical thinkers of the future.
They have the capacity to think unconventionally. They have the capacity to develop new ways on how to solve a particular problem. More importantly, they have the capability to try something new without fearing the consequences of failure. Consider the impact of innovators like the creators of Google and Facebook. If the same kind of innovative thinking can be applied to solve water quality control problems, then, the future looks bright for the natural environment.
With regards to the second strategy, it is important to consider the importance of mobility, and the capability to directly cause positive change on a specific area. It is foolish to wait for the government to act on water quality control issues affecting a local area. It is easier to mobilize support, and to affect change using the resources, and manpower of a local group.
It is therefore practical to encourage the creation of groups that will safeguard freshwater sources. If the source of water is the nearby river system, then, it is best to create an environmental watchdog that is based on the same area. The members of the group can effectively monitor the changes of the natural environment. Their efforts will help supply critical information to local officials with regards to problems that require their attention.
A non-government organization dedicated to the conservation of freshwater sources in the area has an emotional connection to that particular locality. At the same time, they have more incentive to safeguard freshwater sources in their area as compared to a group that is located several miles away. However, the non-government organization that is tasked to enhance the initiative in improving water quality control measures must be educated regarding recent technologies associated with monitoring the quality of freshwater sources in the area. They must realize that “monitoring is the application of fundamental scientific methods of observation of the environment” (Krantzberg, 2010).
Positive and Negative Consequences
Members of the local population must experience tangible positive consequences with regards to their conservation efforts. It is not enough to merely encourage the members of the community to help in the environmental work needed to save a river system, or secure the integrity of groundwater sources. They have to see and experience the benefits of their actions.
For example, coordinated effort in pressuring manufacturing facilities to treat the byproducts of their factories before it is released to the nearby river has significantly reduced the amount of hazardous material dumped into a freshwater source. Residents of the said area must see the revival of the river through hard data regarding fish population, and other natural resources connected to the said river system.
A positive feedback can inspire people to action. It will help inspire the next generation’s leaders and innovative thinkers to join the struggle against environmental degradation. However, one of the most powerful forces that compel people to action is the realization of impending danger. They need to now that past actions has contributed to the destruction of something that they consider of great value. It is therefore imperative to educate people with regards to the impact of certain practices that caused the destruction of freshwater sources. They must realize that their refusal to participate has made it extremely difficult to monitor business practices, and man-made activities that caused the pollution of rivers and streams.
Modern construction methods enable human beings to create structures that have made life easier for urban dwellers. However, the construction of mega-structures has tremendous negative impact on pollution levels, watershed areas, and public water supply. The absence of effective measures in controlling the environmental impact of construction, sediments, and other pollutants created an irreversible effect on freshwater sources.
The technology utilized to construct departments stores, urban housing, and skyscrapers is the same technology that is needed to construct a water delivery system to provide freshwater supply to residents in populous urban centers. The technology used to deliver water is the same technology that destroys the main source of water. However, technology can be utilized to improve efforts in protecting freshwater sources. A good example is Information Technology.
Information Technology is being harnessed to enhance traditional water monitoring strategies. Information Technology helps improve monitoring activities, especially if one will consider the complicated nature of monitoring that includes: sampling, laboratory analysis, data management, data analysis, reporting, and use of the resulting information in management decision making (Younos, 2002).
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Environmental policies create a legal imperative with regards to the importance of conserving freshwater. The absence of applicable and relevant environmental policies relegates the discussion of water conservation to an ethical issue. For example, global warming is an important issue. However, for many years no one paid attention to its significance until the government started to initiate policies that elevated its importance in the eyes of the general public.
As a result, the creation of policies that established legal sanctions on certain activities has made global warming a national issue. The same thing can be said of environmental policies that put pressure on businessmen, developers, and local officials to seriously consider the long-term effects of their actions (Pharino, 2007).
Environmental policies are not only effective in creating a legal imperative to keep unscrupulous businessmen wary of their decisions. Environmental policies can help establish good practices that ensure the implementation of long-term strategies that has a positive impact on local freshwater sources. For example, there are statewide permits like storm water permits for urban areas under 100,000 people, industrial uses, and construction (Hancock, 2009). The permits are pragmatic steps in compelling people to contribute in their own little way to reduce their impact on the environment.
Environmental policies encourage the creation of water sensitive planning and design. For example, in the state of Maryland, Prince George County implemented policies with regards to the creation of bio-retention structures. It is an example of an integrated landscape-based micromanagement tools for storm water management. The absence of this type of policies has resulted in excessive flooding in urban centers all over the world (Pitt, 2007). At the same time, the inability to control storm water has resulted in environmental degradation that has exacerbated the effect of natural calamities.
Environmental policies are effective if it is based on scientific research. Therefore, policy makers must not only develop policies based on its impact on stakeholders. Policies must be crafted based on long-term effects. It is therefore imperative to go beyond data collection. It is important to establish a culture of monitoring within a local area. Coordinated action must result in the creation of policies that will develop sustainable strategies in improving water quality control.
Krantzberg, G. (2010). Advances in water quality control. New York: Scientific Research Publishing.
Hancock, D. (2009). Clearer structure, cleaner water. Washington, D.C.: Diane Publishing.
Pharino, C. (2007). Sustainable water quality. New York: Springer.
Pitt, R. (2007). Construction site erosion. PA: Desetech Publication.
Younos, T. (2002). Advances in water monitoring research. CO: Water Resources Publications.