Appreciation … of Water

March 22nd 2024 was the annual World Water Day which aims to raise awareness and inspire action to tackle water and sanitation crises.1 This year it focused on the theme, ‘Leveraging Water for Peace.’ 

In a statement by the European Commission, this is explained: ‘As water scarcity intensifies, increased competition for dwindling freshwater resources threatens stability among and within nations through conflicts, displacement, or migration. And water is also far too often used as a weapon of war.’ 2

When I lived in the West Indies, I developed a healthy appreciation of water which was not in constant supply but came in pipes to the house intermittently. As we lived on the top of a hill, we only received water when the pressure was sufficient to reach our bottom tank, where it was then pumped up to the tanks nearer the house. In the dry season we regularly had to get water delivered in a lorry because we had or had nearly run out of water in our storage tanks. 

Our tenuous water supply, especially in the dry season, has made me very appreciative of this precious commodity which I had always taken for granted in the UK. Bucket showers and saving ‘grey’ water for the plants became a way of life for us and at the charity where I helped out, we regularly talked to the children about ways they and their families could save water.

Having a lack of something so often leads to appreciation when received. In Trinidad and Tobago, rain is referred to as ‘drops of blessings’ and this charming phrase resonates, especially when, during the dry season, we received a treasured downpour. 

As the European Commission states: ‘Universal access to water and sanitation are human rights’ and the commonality of the need for clean water is something which binds all of humanity and nations. It is very fitting that the theme of this year’s World Water Day is centred on the use of water for peace, as both water and peace are essential to a harmonious and healthy world. 

Also, water is vital for all life. We simply cannot live without it. The average percentage of water in a person’s body is about 60% (ranging from around 45- 75 % depending on age, sex, percentage of fat and hydration levels).3

Currently in the UK we are having an over-abundance of pouring rain and have sympathy for those who suffer because of it, such as farmers who cannot plant seeds due to the soggy land; however, let’s be grateful for and appreciate these simple, but oh so necessary, molecules of two hydrogen to one oxygen atom – and not just on World Water Day.

Su Mason PhD.

 Image by rony michaud from Pixabay



1.International Institute for Sustainable Development. World Water Day 2024 - 2024/#:~:text=World%20Water%20Day%202024%20will,UN%20observance%20day%20in%201993.

2. European Commission. World Water Day: Joint Statement by the High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell and Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius
3.Medical News Today. What is the average percentage of water in the human body?

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