Our indispensable asset

by Jenny Friedrich-Freksa

Are we running out of water? (Issue III/2022)

-

The Pillars on Mount Martha beach in Australia. Photo: Mustafah Abdulaziz


This year, too, a catastrophic flood or devastating drought is likely to happen somewhere – or, more likely, both. Again, we will learn that climate change is a major contributor to these events, and we will know that we have known this for a long time, but still have done nothing about it. Many of the biggest changes underway on our planet involve water. Polar ice is melting, oceans are littered, drinking water is contaminated, and ecosystems, in which water plays a leading role, are imperiled.

In this issue, we are diving into humans and our relationship to water. It is an ancient story; water is key for all religions and cultures, an endless list of poets have dwelled on its beauty and purity. So, how is it that we humans have become so alienated from our vital resource? Can today's water problems be solved using old knowledge or new technologies? 

“Many of the biggest changes underway on our planet involve water”

We have asked the writers A. L. Kennedy, Ben Okri, and Katerina Poladjan to write about water for us. We spoke with water researcher Aditi Mukherji from New Delhi about whether water is really scarce or whether we are just managing it badly. And we asked people all over the world about their relationship with water – the South African surfer Suthu Magiwane as well as fishermen at Lake Victoria in Uganda, Máxima Acuña de Chaupe, a farmer in the Peruvian Andes, or the Kazakh ecologist Zauresh Alimbetova, who is fighting to save the Aral Sea.

“Every vein, every muscle has woken up,” writes the Argentine author Leo Boix about swimming. “The blood flows fast as my body drifts...” Now it’s summer, and many of us are drifting somewhere out in the lake, river or ocean. It would do us good to remember our indispensable, glorious water the rest of the year, too. 



similar articles

Make it yourself (I think that ...)

I think that my life is worth as much as every other

commented by Andy Marso

I think that the lives of people with disabilities are still not valued as much as they should be. Here in the United States, news of the daily COVID death toll...

more


Someone else's paradise (Editorial)

Editorial

Jenny Friedrich-Freksa

Our chief editor takes a look at the current issue.

more


Are we running out of water? (What's different elsewhere)

The smell of tar

by Alicja Kwade

In Katowice, rain evaporated above heated tar, filling the air with caramel sweetness, a mixture of freshness and dirt.

more


Taboo (Topic: Taboo)

A belated coming out

by Leo Boix

On finally telling my father the truth about my homosexuality.

more


Someone else's paradise (World report)

“I just had to take a stand”

an interview with Arshak Makichyan

It is a hard struggle to protest climate change in Russian capital, explains Arshak Makichyan.

more


Nonstop (Cultural spots)

Lake Urmia in Iran

by Maximilian Mann

When I first travelled to Lake Urmia in the northwest of Iran, I was shocked: Where only a few years ago children from the surrounding area learned to swim, today lies a salt desert.

more