Water and Work

Whether you are a fisherman, a farmer, or a factory worker, your livelihood depends on water.

If you make your living fishing, your harvest could be greatly diminished by water pollution. As a farmer, your crop yield might suffer from water scarcity. As a factory worker without access to good sanitation, you may contract diseases due poor water quality.

Each year, the United Nations observes World Water Day on the 22nd of March. This year’s World Water Day theme, “Water and Jobs,” explores how many jobs depend on having enough safe water. 2016’s World Water Day goal is, “Better Water, Better Jobs.”World Water Day Logo - 2016

Water quality and quantity directly affects workers in all fields. Unsanitary conditions and unsafe water lead to illness and absenteeism.

Water and work intersect in the management of water resources for agricultural and industrial use.

Some water management jobs are so crucial that they must be performed without fail—even without pay. Continue reading


Innovations in Sanitation: The Future of Sanitation

Innovations in sanitation can be something as complex as self-contained waste recycling technology, or something as simple as a reusable cloth sanitary napkin.

Many of the innovations discussed in this series on sanitation are already in use in India. Some of them are just in the pilot phase; others have become integrated into the daily lives of city dwellers and rural villagers. While many strides have been made, millions of Indians every day are still negatively impacted by poor sanitation. Continue reading

Innovations in Sanitation: Toilet Tech

Picture a toilet. Is it made of porcelain, perhaps? Does it have a water-filled bowl to collect the waste? Is the waste then flushed into a sewer system?

Does the toilet you imagined have a tank, fed by indoor plumbing? Does the tank hold clean water that is used to refill the toilet bowl?

If you pictured something like this,


chances are that you live in a part of the world where water is relatively plentiful. It’s a fair bet that you have indoor plumbing. And probably all of your neighbours do, too.

Flush toilets are a familiar part of everyday life for many. However, some areas of the world lack the resources to support flush toilets.

India’s water crisis makes flush toilets an impractical solution for the country’s sanitation needs. While flush toilets need no electricity to operate, their water requirements would be impossible to meet.

Continue reading