This year's Madrid summit marks a key milestone in the ongoing development of the Enlazando Alternativas network for both highlighting EU complicity with human rights and environmental abuses and highlighting the real alternatives offered by social movements of integration and development that respect the rights of people, communities, and protect the environment.
An international seminar of the Reclaiming Public Water Network brought together participants from more than 30 countries, who shared knowledge and experiences about how to improve water provision through the democratization of water management.
The EU's announced fund of 40 million Euros to support “non-profit partnerships” of water and sanitation utilities in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific is the latest evidence that the corporate push for water privatisation has been forced on to the back foot.
Projects protecting Jakarta against floods are likely to damage the environment and could threaten the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people. The Dutch government, supporting these projects, should question how it balances its interest in supporting Dutch companies with its stated policies of sustainable and inclusive development.
Brid Brennan, Olivier Hoedeman, Philipp Terhorst, Satoko Kishimoto
09 October 2004
The time has now come to refocus the global water debate to the key question:how to improve and expand public water delivery around the world? Important lessons can be learned from people-centred, participatory public models that are in place or under development in cities like Dhaka Bangladesh), Cochabamba (Bolivia), Savelugu (Ghana) and Recife (Brazil), to mention a few.
The water war in Cochabamba, Bolivia, provided some of the first shots against privatisation of water services heard around world, but necessary institutional and cultual changes, as opposed to symbolic restructuring of the board of the public service institution, have not yet happened.
Thruthout - Private companies have been working to make a profit from water since the 1600s, when the first water companies were established in England and Wales. The first wave of water privatization occurred in the 1800s, and by the mid- to late-19th century, privately owned water utilities were common in Europe, the United States and Latin America, and began to appear in Africa and Asia.