Unless you were away on vacation or locked up in your office buried in work, you no doubt noticed that on March 22 the World celebrated World Water Day an official day sanctioned by the UN. Recall, on 22 March every year, the World is about taking action to tackle the water crisis. In 1993, the United Nations General Assembly officially designated March 22 as World Water Day. World Water Day is coordinated by UN-Water in collaboration with governments and partners.
It was great to see a flurry of activity online, in particular, on social media, where concerned people around the World shared stories, resources, maps, webmaps and web services with others and tagged them with the official hashtag #WorldWaterDay. Browsing the hashtag you’ll find countless stories and resources – note, this year’s theme was wastewater.
- With us being in the GIS industry, we are connected with many companies, orgs, agencies that were sharing amazing resources on this day. For example:
- From Esri, the Sustainable Development goals Story Map
- From BlueRaster the EPA watersheds mapping app
- Water Conservation Infographic via the USFS
- Blueraster and UNICEF – Thirsting for a Future: Water and children in a changing climate
- EarthGenome Green Infrastructure Support Tool
A Favorite Water Conservation Mapping Tool – Save the Rain
Of particular interest on this topic, a resource from couple of years ago comes to mind as a fantastic example of GIS, mapping, and geospatial technology being used to solve the World’s most pressing environmental issues – enter Save the Rain. This resource developed by Mark Laudon (@maprus) of B.C, Canada has won several competitions (including the World Bank) in the past and is a well deserving favorite tool that exemplifies how GIS can help with such matters as water conservation. Simply put, Save the Rain enables anyone to locate an address, then define a building footprint in order to determine how much water could be saved by capturing and saving the rainfall and runoff from the structure.
About the app:
The idea behind the save-the-rain water productivity calculator is to basically use open data sources to actually make a difference in the world. This creative app strives to deliver a tool Developing Worlds and areas suffering from water shortages can utilize to help make decisions with regards to rain water harvesting. This original app also provides an avenue to raise awareness of how high a value rain water can have in the production of crops/hunger resolution. (Source: ArcGIS Online)
We used the Save the Rain app to explore our HQ to determine what could be saved:
Save the Rain from your rooftop
Create an outline of the building footprint
Water conservation / savings are calculated for your area and building
Go ahead and see how you can Save the Rain
See more about World Water Day – http://www.worldwaterday.org/