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Earthwatch at World Water Week

In August members of the Earthwatch team headed to Stockholm for SIWI World Water Week as part of the HSBC Water Programme. Launched in 2012, the HSBC Water Programme brings together expertise from Earthwatch, our corporate partner HSBC, and their charity partners WaterAid and WWF, to employ a holistic approach to tackling the global water crisis.

Water has repeatedly been identified as a global risk by the World Economic Forum. The water we drink, use to wash with and grow crops is under threat globally – risking human lives, habitats and species. A quarter of the world’s population live in ecosystems under threat from water scarcity. 844 million people globally live without access to clean water, and 2.3 billion live without access to basic sanitation.

The HSBC Water Programme is a unique partnership that utilises the skills and expertise of each partner to provide and protect water sources, educate communities and enable people to prosper and drive economic development globally. It is driving joint action towards a shared ambition of a sustainable future.

Our Freshwater Guru, Izzy, presented in two sessions, explaining the importance of freshwater and how citizen science can enable improved monitoring of freshwater quality. Our global FreshWater Watch initiative has been an integral part of the HSBC Water Programme.  During the course of the programme, over 8,000 employees across 36 cities worldwide have trained as citizen scientists. In turn, these trained individuals have collected over 17,000 water quality data points, providing important evidence to inform freshwater management and policy.

This Autumn, FreshWater Watch will be bigger and better than ever! With the support of a new corporate partner, Royal Bank of Canada, we’re taking the WaterBlitz to Paris, Dublin and Luxembourg. This will encourage locals to think about why water matters to them and to get involved with local water monitoring, contributing further vital data to our global freshwater network.

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