Attaining sustainable development in developing countries : a perspective from water resources engineering

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University of New Brunswick


A worldwide environmental awakening is focusing attention and calling for action to limit the damage to the Earth from the harmful actions resulting from irresponsible exploitation of natural resources. Sustainable development has been proposed as a solution to many of these problems. A broad range of issues must be addressed if sustainable development is to be understood and applied. Developing countries account for three quarters of the world's population and a significant part of the resources. Water is one of the most important natural resources and has a major impact on human life and the life of this planet. Sustainable development is multidimensional but this senior report focuses on sustainable development from the perspective of water resources. The report identifies some of the important factors for designing water resources projects needed to achieve sustainable development in developing nations. A small village, Chungungo, in the northern part of Chile is chosen as an example of an attempt to achieve sustainable in water resources. Non-traditional technologies such as fog water collection, solar powered desalination system, solar aquatic wastewater treatment and photovoltaic pumps are suggested as means to achieve sustainability of the water resources of the village. Conclusions and recommendations are included.