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September 23, 2019

Save water, don’t waste!

The dry season had already set in and its effects are starting to be felt. The water levels in the rivers, streams, creeks, lakes, pools, ponds and reservoirs are beginning to gradually recede. Not very long, some may even dry up as the dry season progressed. The effects of the scarcity of water would be more noticeable in the dry zones, where they received very low amount of rainfalls. However, the people living in areas where there are abundance of water supply would not realize the hardships of those who do not have easy access to water. As I had been to such dry and draught stricken places, I knew their problems full well and learned to value the water.
In fact, water is not only the source of life for every living being, but also a necessity for trees and plants. If there is no water there would be no life, whatsoever, on earth. So we should conserve the water as much as possible. It is one of nature’s gifts and is the main conservator of the nature as well.
We should not waste water, as it is the most precious thing for our survival. Some people dwelling in urban areas of Yangon, where there are no severe water shortages, may not understand the hardships of the water shortage problems. Only those living in the outlying or sub-urban areas know and are suffering from these problems. We are lucky to belong to the group, who do not have to suffer very much from those problems. We should be considerate to those who had to suffer, so we should not waste water and make every effort to conserve it.
Many of us are not aware of the fact that the majority of our population do not have access to clean water. In some places only stagnant water from ponds and pools are available for consumption. Some fotunate ones will have access to water from streams, creeks and rivers where there are running water, which can be deemed as clean. However, as they are not properly treated, they too are not hygienic. In the dry zones, to get an earthen potful of water would take hours of patient waiting under the scorching sun to collect, during the dry seasons. When the rivers, streams, creeks, pools and ponds had dried up people have to scrape the sand beds to make small pits and scoop whatever little water that seeped out with coconut shells and fill their pots. The water thus collected has a murky colour, but that was quite good enough for drinking, for those poor people.
Keeping those in mind, we, who are blessed with easy access to tap water or running water supplied right to our homes, should have consideration for those who are not as fortunate as we are. We should not waste the precious water. There are many who are not being responsible or dutiful citizens. Every morning before dawn, I used to run the water pump to fill the overhead tank. I always stay close to the switch so that I can switch off the pump the moment I hear the water overflowing. On many occasions I noticed the sounds of water overflowing from nearby houses, which could go on for quite a long time. As it was still dark I could not know from which houses they were and that fact made me frustrated, because I was unable to report to the authority as I cannot pinpoint the houses that were wasting water. The persons who were operating the pumps must have fallen asleep or just not paying attention. This revealed their disregard to others and their ignorance of the preciousness of water. They should be penalized.
Other examples of water wastage are the unrepaired leaking underground water supply pipes and faulty faucets in homes and at public places. It is not rare to see water seeping out of the ground by the roadsides along the route I used to take for my morning walks. Some may remain the same way for months on end, without anyone bothering to repair them. Also, many may have seen water being wasted due to faulty faucets or valves at public places like the offices, schools, monasteries, cinemas, train stations, bus terminals, public toilets etc; left unrepaired.
With the devastating climate change threatening the balance of the ecosystems, we should be more concerned about water conservation. It is not only our life line, but also the survival of the whole world including fauna and flora, depends on water. In my opinion it is high time that the people of Myanmar are more concerned with the conservation of water and each and everyone should observe their civic duties and get involved in the process of water conservation by not wasting it.
Looking forward to a civics duty minded society.

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