Water waste

Muna Al-Fuzai

Earlier this week, Kuwait marked its 58th National Day and the 28th Liberation Day. The national celebration was closer to a water festival and ended with much grumbling and damage – without solutions or alternatives for the coming years or a call to launch awareness campaigns for families that encourage their children to hurt the country and individuals’ properties under the pretext of celebrating.

The celebrations are now over, but I wonder what the youth learned from the experience of the Iraqi invasion and what lessons should we convey to children, which they will need in the future. I believe this week was a difficult time for many people in the country who did not travel during the long holiday and had to bear the disturbing scenes created by many youngsters with water guns, who used them against pedestrians and motorists.

If someone decides to leave the house, they will expose themselves to the risk of being hurt; if not from the water, then from stones that could crash their cars! I don’t see any connection between hurling rocks hidden inside water balloons at cars under the excuse of celebrations. A friend said playing with water is justifiable here – what else can people do? There is no activity that attracts young people and they are the majority, so some families with children can either choose to go out on the streets or stay at home.

What has this generation learned about those two important occasions? Nothing, except the joy of harming people – and for what? Nothing, except a complete waste of money and harming innocent people with dirt. In 2016, during a seminar held on the occasion of World Water Day, the undersecretary of the ministry of electricity and water said Kuwait is classified as one of the poorest countries in water resources in the GCC and has one of the highest consumptions of water – the average per capita consumption in GCC countries is the highest in the world.

So, we are one of the poorest countries in the world, yet we play with water. Of course, it is no secret that water production costs are constantly increasing. I think if this waste continues, there might be a day when we will only dream of water. There is no doubt that water is a global problem, and in order to draw attention to it, the United Nations General Assembly declared March 22 as “World Water Day” in 1993, and called for the conservation of water resources.

Dr Mohamed Ghazal, an expert in economic science, published a scientific report in May 2018 on the problem of water in the world, and identified some reasons. He said the world’s water problem is due to overexploitation of water resources and the uncontrolled consumption of water in cities. He also mentioned that the Middle East region is facing acute water shortages, and nearly 700 million people in 43 countries have water resources below the minimum human requirement.

Some may think that these observations are not relevant to the national days of Kuwait, but I see otherwise. I believe the celebration of a nation is by protecting its sources of wealth, and water is a great wealth that we must preserve. I think there is a moral and national obligation to rationalize the usage of water.

By Muna Al-Fuzai
muna@kuwaittimes.net