“Once you carry your own water, you will learn the value of every drop.”

By WCIA volunteer, Meg Russell.

Each one of us interacts with a water supply every day, if not two or three. While it is easy to imagine these as different water supplies at different locations, ultimately, we all rely on the same system. Water is a finite resource. The water available on Earth now, will be the water available on Earth forever. With the effects of climate change being seen more frequently in countries across the globe, the concern of water security is rising. Droughts, wildfires, flooding; these are a few of the commonly growing events linked to rising temperatures and changing weather patterns on Earth driven by climate change. Each one has a profound effect on the availability of water.

Water shortages are not only a concern for the physical environment but are also powerful in determining conflict, displacement, famine and mortality. It is important that we as global citizens consider those affected by such events and take action by changing our relationship with water and begin taking a more mindful, measured approach to our use of it as individuals. 

One of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals created by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015,  is Sustainable Development Goal 6 which has the aim of “clean water and sanitation for all”. The United Nations have stated that to reach this goal by 2030, the current pace of progress needs to increase by four times. 

Taking Action 

When thinking about how we as individuals can build a more sustainable relationship with water there are many ways to help.

  • Washing your clothes less and waiting to put on a full load can save huge amounts of water and energy.
  • Taking shorter showers and avoiding running the tap for too long are other small changes you can make to your routine which can have a huge impact on the amount of water you consume. This may mean using a dishwasher instead of washing up in the sink to make more efficient use of your water supply.
  • Another interesting point to consider is reducing your food waste and shopping more mindfully so nothing ends up in the bin. Food production requires mass amounts of water and so making sure nothing goes to waste is crucial when aiming to live sustainably.
  • There are other options to consider in the garden, for example, timing your watering sessions and installing water butts that collect rainfall  instead of using tap water for your plants. 

For much more information on how to save water Welsh Water have helpful tips and advice.

Looking After our Water in Wales

Eryri (Snowdonia), North Wales

The Welsh Government sets the legislation and policy direction for water resources in Wales while Welsh Ministers assist water companies to prepare and publish their plans to ensure they support a sustainable future for Wales. The organisation Natural Resources Wales works to protect and care for the environment in Wales with the help from the rest of the country, stating, “we’re all in this together; from Government to public sector to businesses to individuals – we all need to play our part.” They work on improving water quality in Wales through sustainable approaches that combat and decrease chemical pollution in our waters. Despite a significant decrease in industrial emissions, acidification is still a problem for Welsh rivers and lakes. 

To find out more visit: 


Increasing our knowledge and awareness of the water around us is key in understanding how to interact with it sustainably and what actions need to be taken to make sure, as a nation, Wales is doing it’s part in providing “clean water and sanitation for all”.

“No water, no life. No blue, no green.” Sylvia Earle

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