Sunday, November 23, 2014

Watershed Conservation a ‘Positive’ for Cities: Report

Urban Water Blueprint (Credit: Click to Enlarge.
One-fourth of cities would see a “positive return on investment” if spending was directed at conserving and protecting vital watershed sources, according to The Nature Conservancy.

Preventing pollution and sediment from reaching potable sources often costs less than later treating that water, the Arlington, Virginia-based organization said Friday in a report that analyzed 2,000 sources of drinking water for 534 cities.  The Urban Water Blueprint was completed through a partnership with the International Water Association and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group.

“I live in New York, I get my water from the Catskills, and the city 20 years ago decided to invest to protect the source of its water supply,” Daniel Shemie, director of water funds for The Nature Conservancy, said Friday.  “They found it to be very cost-effective -- an investment of about $1.5 billion saved a $6 billion to $8 billion expenditure.  For years, we’ve been asking ourselves, ‘Where are the other New Yorks?’”

More than 700 million people in the 100 largest and mid-sized cities could benefit from similar investments as well as from improved agricultural and forest-management techniques, according to the report, released a day ahead of the UN’s World Toilet Day that highlights improving global sanitation.

Read More at Watershed Conservation a ‘Positive’ for Cities: Report

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