Behare Bajraktari, Berlin
Journalist & Publicist/ Specialized in Climate Change and Environmental Journalism
The concerns that were raised at the Water Summit were also raised by Kosovo some time ago, published in the report “Cadaster of Water Pollutants of Kosovo 2010”, which states, among other things, that the 21st century for global waters presents two common challenges: the quantity and its quality.
It is estimated that by 2025, about 2/3 of the world’s countries will face water stress. Clean, safe, and adequate water is vital for the existence of living organisms and the normal functioning of ecosystems, communities, and the economy. But the quality of water has been significantly endangered with the increase of the human population, the expansion of agricultural and industrial activities, the report further states. Every day in the world, millions of tons of untreated urban, agricultural, and industrial sewage are discharged into the waters. Every year, rivers, lakes, seas, and oceans receive pollution from more than 6.6 billion people on our planet, the report further states.
Poor quality water endangers human health and the integrity of ecosystems, reduces the amount of drinking water available and reduces economic productivity. There are a number of natural and human activities such as: agriculture, industry, mining, waste disposal, population growth, urbanism and climate changes that affect the biological, chemical, and physical characteristics of waters, significantly reducing their quality.
If we talk about Kosovo, it has available water resources which, however, thanks to the geomorphology and relief, very quickly leave its territory and go in the direction of three different seas, which is a rare case for such a small territory. The quality of these waters is poor, as there is not even better treatment of wastewater before discharge into water bodies and underground aquifers, according to the latest report.
Kosovo to a certain extent is affected by all the above aspects of pollution, and this should serve as an initiative that in addition to quantity in strategic planning, quality should also be taken as a basis, while for the community that, in addition to saving water, care should be taken and not be polluted.
Kosovo has limited water resources, either surface water or underground water, therefore their protection and rational use is of vital importance for a sustainable economic development of the country. As a result of the geographical position, very few rivers of Kosovo cross its territory (Ibri, Lepenci, Lumëbardhi i Prizren and Morava e Binçës) and quickly go outside its territory.
Most of Kosovo’s rivers are seasonal rivers that depend mainly on atmospheric precipitation, therefore during the summer, when the demand for water increases, river flows are minimal.
Tomorrow: Technology and innovation as a solution to the water problem