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Press Release

Climate Resilience Critical to Water Program Design

Published by Todd Bush on August 22, 2023

iDE taking part in multiple sessions at the leading international conference on water issues

DENVER, Aug. 18, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Market-based programs designed to improve access to water, safely managed sanitation, and hygiene products should be underpinned by environmental sustainability, says Lizz Welch, CEO of international nonprofit iDE.

Speaking alongside partner organizations WRP, Sanergy, Max TapWater and Kohler, iDE will this week tell participants at World Water Week that market-based programs succeed when products and services offered to users are desirable, technically feasible, and economically and environmentally viable.

"In light of the climate crisis, it is important we include the planet as a key stakeholder when we design solutions to enduring challenges within the water sector," says Welch.

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Welch said the market offered opportunities to create programs, which, for example, marketed latrines or produced water filtration systems, that powered people to thrive on their own terms, building livelihoods and lifting communities out of poverty.

"But because climate resilient products can be more expensive, the challenge is ensuring equity for low-income communities, which contribute the least to climate change but are often impacted by severe weather more frequently."

iDE is committed to being part of the solution to climate change, this year reaching carbon neutrality, purchasing offsets, known as carbon credits, for our emissions, which come from the use of electricity, and emissions made by iDE directly, from operating heaters, air conditioners, and vehicles, for example.

As well as the sustainable design session, to be co-hosted by iDE Global WASH senior manager, Elise Mann, on Monday, August 21, iDE is taking part in a number of other sessions at the conference, which is being held in Stockholm, Sweden, from August 20 to 24. These include:

  • August 20: Improving Access to Sanitation through Market-based Solutions in Rural Nepal: Rabindra Karki from iDE Nepal will discuss recent insights uncovered in research about sanitation in remote mountain areas in Nepal and make recommendations about using market systems to improve access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH).
  • August 20: Driving Rural Water Innovation, Concept to Scale-up: Global WASH senior manager Elise Mann will take part in this session convening innovators seeking to accelerate rural water development.
  • August 21: Innovation for Water and Climate: Global WASH director Sarah Custer-Lalanne joins this session to talk about equity in the intersection between WASH and climate.
  • August 21: Diverse Voices and Representations for Stronger Climate Resilient WASH Systems: iDE Cambodia WASH program manager Rana Abdel Sattar will discuss strengthening women's leadership to increase access to WASH.

This year, organizers say World Water Week is focused on innovation at a time of unprecedented challenges. Put on by Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), the conference is the leading international annual gathering on global water issues, held every year since 1991.

SIWI says the conference is a non-profit event, co-created with leading organizations. World Water Week attracts a diverse mix of participants from many professional backgrounds, and every corner of the world.

"Together we develop solutions to the world's greatest water-related challenges, with topics ranging from food security and health to agriculture, technology, biodiversity, and the climate crisis," says SIWI.

About iDE

iDE (International Development Enterprises) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending poverty. Based in Denver, Colorado, our work within agriculture, sanitation, climate change resilience, and gender equality, stands out because we don't simply provide handouts. Instead, iDE believes in powering small-scale entrepreneurs and building robust market ecosystems that lay the groundwork for low income and marginalized people to prosper on their own terms. iDE has almost 1,400 global staff, and offices in 10 countries across Africa, Asia and Central America.

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