This week, 22 March marks World Water Day. As it presents an opportunity to think about and engage with water related issues, I am posting twenty of my photos, from all five continents, to illustrate the subject of ‘water in relation to tourism’.
This year’s theme is ‘Water & Jobs’. Nearly 1.5 billion people (almost half the world’s working population) work in water related, or water dependent, sectors, so it is hoped that the issue of workers’ basic rights will remain at the forefront of the debate.
A sufficient quantity, and high enough quality, of water can change environments, societies and economies for the better. The right politics, economics and practicalities are essential ingredients in the production of clean water; and it’s also essential that as consumers, we continue keep ourselves informed, and ultimately inspired, by water campaigns such as this.
Certainly Nomadic Thoughts’ continued involvement in our charity New Lifeline’s water houses, as well as supporting NGOs such as Just-A-Drop, have taught us to appreciate every slurp, splash and swallow.
In broader terms, tourism, far from producing water, consumes it in vast quantities, both for essentials and for luxuries. Drinking, bathing, washing and swimming in clean treated water should not be under-appreciated as the process by which it gets to hotels, lodges, camps, trains, planes and ever more remote tourism destinations is often quite remarkable.
These images, all of which I took while travelling to, from and around destinations to which Nomadic Thoughts send clients, highlight the enormity of the subject. Whether eating an olive (irrigated by a farmer’s mountain pond), swimming in a pool (built by Middle-Eastern migrant workers), or cruising the world in a mega-cruise boat – the process by which customers have been supplied with fresh water is wholly reliant on technology, engineering, gravity and people power.