Water is essential to life on earth, and the effective management of water is crucial for the use of water in agricultural, industrial, household, recreational and environmental activities


Every person needs 20-50 litres of clean fresh water a day for drinking, cooking and cleaning

  • Every person needs 20-50 litres of clean fresh water a day for drinking, cooking and cleaning


Agriculture accounts for around 70% of water used in the world today and also contributes to water pollution from excess nutrients, pesticides and other pollutants

  • Agriculture accounts for three-quarters (75%) of the total water use in Australia and consecutive years of good rainfall and successful management has increased water availability for this sector.
  • Almost 80% of sub-saharan agriculture depends on 'green water', however most of the rain evaporates before it can be managed to generate 'green water', so little of it can be used due to poor management.
Australia's water use
Kenya's water use


Recreation is an activity that a person does for enjoyment, usually to refresh the body and mind. Water is one of the biggest uses for recreation, for activities such as fishing, canoeing and swimming.

  • Water recreation can have serious effects on the quality of drinking water, which is why there are many rules surrounding where recreation is permitted.
  • In Australia, the government prioritises the water supply over any recreational use where as in Kenya, there are not currently any regulations surrounding water use.
  • For example, Warragamba Dam used to be a primary picnic and fishing area, however due to the risk of water contamination any walking, camping, fishing or non-powered boating can result in a fine of up to $44,000.
  • In contrast to this, the Nairobi Dam is so contaminated that it resulted in a cholera outbreak.
  • It is highly likely that human use of the water played a major role in the severity of the contamination.


Warragamba Dam, Sydney

  • Supplies water to more that 3.7 million people living in Sydney
  • Stores and supplies 80% of Sydneys water
  • 142m high
  • Surface area of 75km squared
  • All water that comes from Warragamba is filtered, tested and monitored
  • Bacteria free
  • Fluoride is added to strengthen teeth and prevent decay
  • The cleanliness of Warragamba has never been better, and surrounding residents are posed to no health risk
Warragamba Dam, Sydney, Australia

Nairobi Dam, Nairobi

  • Provides water to 13% of Nairobi residents only
  • Surface area of 350,000km squared
  • The water has a very high degree of contamination
  • This contaminated water is not treated prior to consumption
  • This has lead to the growth of invasive plant species and recent cholera outbreaks
  • The environmental hazard and health threat has become so severe that excavation of the dam is currently being carried out
Nairobi Dam, Nairobi, Kenya


Individuals, groups and the government all play a major role in helping developing countries such as Kenya manage their water, and developed countries such as Australia maintain its high water quality.



  • Many individuals are currently petitioning to the Nairobi Dam International Government of Kenya to save it from extinction
  • The dam poses a severe health risk to residents and excavation is now being carried out by a foreign investor
  • 114 individuals signed the petition to stop the drainage


United Nations FAO/IAEA

  • Currently working on improving agricultural water management in developing countries.
  • Kenya is one of the 18 African countries participating in a new regional irrigation project to introduce and pilot-test appropriate small scale irrigation technologies (SSITs) with the aim of developing irrigation systems for small-scale farmers for increasing yield and quality of high value crops, and to improve their income and livelihood.

World Bank

  • The World Bank's Board of Executive Directors today approved US$155 million IDA credit to support the Government of Kenya’s efforts to support new water infrastructure, including in water storage and irrigation, and build capacity in water institutions.
  • The IDA credit will finance the first operation under the Government’s Kenya Water Security and Climate Resilience Program, a long-term, transformational program aimed at achieving water security and resilience to climate variability and change throughout the country.
  • The operation will also support the progressive development of an investment pipeline in the water sector, as well as the enabling institutional and information base to ensure that water investments are sustainably planned, developed and maintained for long-term prosperity.

Water Group Australia

  • A large corporate water savings company who secure water and save money through cost effective and sustainable solutions
  • They provide a baseline, identify cost-effective savings, streamline implementation and find solutions that work
  • One example of their work: their water-saving intervention saved a major processor over $45,000 in water bills per year

The Water Project, Kenya

  • An organisation "picking up the slack of Kenya's government" that provides healthcare and water solutions



  • A government-based organisation that aims to ensure water quality meets the Australian Drinking Water guidelines
  • They manage the water quality by protecting the water from the moment it falls as rain right through to piping raw water to a customer's filtration plant and monitoring it throughout the process
  • WaterNSW uses the water monitoring results to choose the best available water to send to the water filtration plants.
  • WaterNSW manages and protects the drinking water catchments, and supplies high quality raw water
  • They work together with local councils, landholders, government agencies and industry to ensure daily activities - particularly building, industry and farming - do not harm the environment that our drinking water comes from

Kenyan Government

  • The Kenyan Government has launched a project that involves the construction of a new dam along River Tana
  • The proposed High Grand Falls Dam will be the single largest undertaking by the government and will irrigate more than 200,000 acres of land
  • To reduce water scarcity in Kenya, the government plans to construct 28 dams across the country
  • The government is stepping up to meet citizens' demands for clean water


  • Anon, 2017. AQUASTAT - FAO's Information System on Water and Agriculture. [online] Fao.org. Available at: <http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/countries_regions/KEN/> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Australian Water Association | AWA | Australia’s Leading Water Authority. [online] Awa.asn.au. Available at: <http://www.awa.asn.au/> [Accessed 14 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Coming soon: Kenya’s largest fresh water dam. [online] Daily Nation. Available at: <http://www.nation.co.ke/lifestyle/smartcompany/Coming-soon-Kenyas-largest-fresh-water-dam/1226-1871014-ic39c5z/index.html> [Accessed 17 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Government of Kenya: Stop the Destruction of Nairobi Dam. [online] Change.org. Available at: <https://www.change.org/p/government-of-kenya-stop-the-destruction-of-nairobi-dam> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Saving Water - Water Conservation - Water Efficiency - Water Metering. [online] Watergroup.com.au. Available at: <http://www.watergroup.com.au/what-we-do> [Accessed 19 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. US GOVERNMENT SUPPORT TO THE WATER SECTOR PROJECTS IN KENYA – Ministry of Water and Irrigation. [online] Water.go.ke. Available at: <http://www.water.go.ke/?p=344> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Water and sanitation | World Vision Australia. [online] Worldvision.com.au. Available at: <https://www.worldvision.com.au/global-issues/work-we-do/water-sanitation> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Water Home Page | Department of the Environment and Energy, Australian Government. [online] Environment.gov.au. Available at: <http://www.environment.gov.au/water> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Water management in Australia - Water Market. [online] Nationalwatermarket.gov.au. Available at: <http://nationalwatermarket.gov.au/about/management/index.html> [Accessed 15 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Water management in Australia - Water Market. [online] Nationalwatermarket.gov.au. Available at: <http://nationalwatermarket.gov.au/about/management/index.html> [Accessed 16 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. Water quality - WaterNSW. [online] Waternsw.com.au. Available at: <http://www.waternsw.com.au/supply/Greater-Sydney/quality> [Accessed 18 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. WaterAid UK - Where we work - Kenya. [online] Wateraid.org. Available at: <http://www.wateraid.org/uk/where-we-work/page/kenya> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Anon, 2017. World Bank to Finance New Kenyan Water Infrastructure For More Irrigation, Agriculture, and Jobs. [online] World Bank. Available at: <http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2013/06/18/world-bank-finance-new-kenyan-water-infrastructure-irrigation-agriculture-jobs> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].
  • Programme, J., 2017. Improving Agricultural Water Management for Crop Productivity in Africa - Stories, NAFA. [online] Www-naweb.iaea.org. Available at: <http://www-naweb.iaea.org/nafa/news/crop-productivity-africa.html> [Accessed 20 Mar. 2017].


Created with images by mypubliclands - "Snake River Area of Critical Environmental Concern, Idaho" • saslonch - "reservoir dam water" • wobogre - "nature landscape field" • ibsut - "Warragamba Dam" • aussiejeff - "Oct 1995 - View SW across Lake Burragorang from Warragamba Dam, New South Wales, Australia" • aussiejeff - "Oct 1995 - View looking NE along Warragamba River from Warragamba Dam, New South Wales, Australia" • japedi - "United Nations"

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