Every drop counts - swimming for the right to water

Ernst Bromeis, Ambassador for projects of Solidarit’Eau, is  famed for his long-distance swims. These water-borne expeditions have made him an ‘ambassador for water’. His recently released book details how Ernst became involved with water and with the fight to ensure that each of us on this planet gets what is rightfully her or his: the access to a plentiful amount of this essential resource.

Ernst Bromeis’ objective is to make human beings aware of the fact that water is finite in amount and fragile in nature. To do such, he undertakes spectacular athletic feats. One of these was accomplished in 2008, in which Ernst swam across 200 of the lakes found in Switzerland’s canton of Graubünden. Another took place in 2014, in which Ernst swam the length of the Rhine. This involved his making his way down the some 1,200 kilometers separating the river’s source (the Lago di Dentro) and its mouth in the Netherlands.

In his book “Every drop counts – swimming for the right to water”, Ernst tells the story of how his vision of protecting our right to water arose. He also relates how he finds the strength to overcome setbacks and to set forth his pursuit of this vision. Ernst’s feats and his book are intended to make us aware of the importance of water – and to impart to each and every one of us the courage to devote ourselves to protecting humanity and the environment.

eco.naturkongress: Switzerland's imported water risk

Together with WWF Switzerland the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Nestlé, Quantis and Aquasis, the Swiss Water Partnership will hold a workshop on water risks during the eco.natukongress which will take place in Basel on 31 March.

The WEF Global Risk report 2016 ranks water as the risk of highest concern for the next 10 years and sees water emerging as a top risk in terms of development impact. Water risk is of concern to many countries which are not currently suffering from water stress, as they import goods produced in regions where water is scarce. Globalised supply chains turn local water user problems into risks for multinationals and investments. Without a sustainable management of these supply chains, neither SDG 6 nor sustainable growth can be achieved.

In this event, representatives from different sectors will discuss the water risk for policy makers, investors, companies and consumers of different countries and solutions to these challenges. The discussion will show the different perspectives the specific sectors have on the issue and the different approaches that can be taken in order to mitigate the problems – both on firm level and in the entire watershed. A “fishbowl” discussion will allow for a close interaction between the audience and the presenters.

Read more about the event in our blog article. And do not forget to register for the bilingual workshop W3 – Kennen Sie ihr Wasserrisiko? here.

eco.naturkongress: South-North Coordination in the water sector

Together with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, cewas and Swiss Bluetec Bridge, the Swiss Water Partnership will hold a workshop on South-North Cooperation in the water sector during the eco.natukongress which will take place in Basel on 31 March. The workshop is seeking to address the following questions:

  • Which are the key success factors and resources to mobilize for a successful business partnership between Switzerland and emerging or developing countries?
  • What can we learn from these countries and partners regarding simple, efficient and innovative solutions ?

Read more about the event in our blog article. And do not forget to register for the bilingual workshop W9 – Süd-Nord Kooperation im Wasserbereich here.

ReSource Award: call for application

The ReSource Award focuses on social entrepreneurial approaches implementing the principles of sustainability in water management. The prize builds on more than ten years of experience in supporting outstanding partners heading for sustainable watershed management. An international jury awards USD 150’000 to new social entrepreneurial initiatives driving sustainable water management practices. The prize combines financial and non-financial contributions (coaching/expert advice).

With this award, the Swiss Re Foundation aims at contributing to the advancement of water resilience in low, lower-middle and uppermiddle-income countries. Please find more detailed information on the flyer or on the webpage www.resourceaward.org.

Charities, non-profit organizations and revenue-generating social enterprises are invited to submit proposals for novel, entrepreneurial solutions in sustainable water management practices.

Participants are requested to answer an online questionnaire (available on www.resourceaward.org) on their social entrepreneurial initiative by 22 March 2017, 24.00 CET. All short proposals received by this due date will be assessed in March and April 2017 by a team of water and business experts based on previously defined criteria. On 19 April 2017, the authors of the best-ranked short proposals will be informed and move into the next steps of the selection procedure (see flyer for further information).

The short and full proposals submitted for the ReSource Award will be assessed with regard to the following areas:

  • Social and ecological challenge: The proposal demonstrates a profound and authentic understanding of the social and ecological problem to be addressed.
  • Impact: The expected social, ecological and economic impact is clearly defined and in line with the scope of the ReSource Award.
  • Approach: The proposal outlines a compelling social entrepreneurial approach to address the defined challenge. The defined goal and expected impact can realistically be achieved with the approach presented.
  • Financials: There is a financially viable business plan in place based on clear and logical assumptions.
  • Competencies: A qualified team with appropriate skills and track record is in place.
    Risk management: All relevant risk drivers and related prevention and risk mitigation measures are defined.

Text retrieved from the flyer announcing the ReSource Award.