There are a lot of epidemics going on in Africa. While poverty is at the forefront of these problems, there seems to be another which is prevalent but mostly overlooked. This is the lack and access to clean water in Africa. Poverty might not be easily eliminated, but the water crisis in Africa is a solvable issue. Here are five sustainable clean water solutions to the water crisis in Africa.
Since most African countries are surrounded by salty bodies of water that are not consumable, desalination to solve the global water crisis is the latest proposition. The desalination process involves the removal of saltwater from seawater, to make it fit for human use. It is a sustainable and eco-friendly solution to providing clean water, as opposed to building dams. However, it is a very expensive project but provides an immediate solution to water scarcity in Africa.
Some parts of Africa are tropical and receive rainwater frequently. Setting up a rain catchment tank is easy and sustainable to ensure that there isn’t a lack of water. This process is also known as rain harvesting and is a great water conservation method.
Rain catchment tanks serve as an immediate water source in areas where clean, tap water is very scarce. Some water tanks are capable of holding over 100,000 gallons of water, and a continuous collection of this rainwater allows for a steady supply of water all year long.
Building sand dams is one of the most cost-effective and sustainable solutions to water scarcity in Africa. Sand dams are basically cemented walls built across a sand river to retain water. By blocking the water ladened with sand, the sand dam retains the clean water, letting the soil or sand flow out. Sand dabs are especially useful in dry areas as they provide useful water. Since sand dams can store an extremely large amount of it, it acts as a reliable supply of water to communities with no access to water.
Constructing wells is one of the easiest and least expensive solutions to the water crisis in Africa. Wells are very useful as they provide almost a lifetime of supply of water to communities, with little cost of maintenance. Also, old wells can be repaired as well to act as a means of water supply. With wells, the problem of water scarcity in Africa is reduced to a minimal level.
Springwater has always been a source of water to rural communities in Africa. Since it is a body of water that can get easily contaminated with leaves, human and animal waste, etc, it is necessary to construct a spring house or box over the spring to protect it from these pollutants. This is one way to provide clean water to areas without water. By connecting a pipe to the spring, it can even be used to fill up wells and catchment tanks.