World Food Day: water as the driving force for the planet and the basis for our food

Share on:

On October 16, we celebrate the World Food Daya date proclaimed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in order to raise awareness and sensitize about the need to value the resources that nature offers us as a provider of food. This year, under the slogan, “Water is life. Water nourishes. Leave no one behind“The aim is to highlight the importance of this essential resource for life on Earth and as the basis for our food, ensuring its equitable distribution to all people.

According to FAO data, water covers about 71% of the planet’s surface, but only 2.5% of the water is fresh, suitable for drinking, agriculture and most industrial uses. In fact, worldwide, 72% of all freshwater withdrawals go to the agricultural sector, and 95% of our food is produced on land, where the use of this natural resource is also necessary.

However, freshwater is not infinite. Rapid population growth, urban and economic development, and the effects of climate change are putting the world’s water resources under increasing stress. By 2050, global agricultural water demand is expected to increase by 35%.

Currently, according to FAO, 2.4 billion people live in water-stressed countries. It is also estimated that 600 million people depend, to some extent, on aquatic food systems for their livelihoods. At the same time, freshwater resources per person have decreased by 20% in recent decades and the availability and quality of water is threatened by inadequate use and management, overexploitation of groundwater, pollution, global warming and water scarcity.

In turn, the scarcity of this resource is also threatening the preservation of aquatic ecosystems. In this regard, wetlands, one of the most biologically diverse enclaves, are disappearing three times faster than forests and 85% of them have been lost in the last 300 years. Therefore, actions such as limiting the temperature increase to 1.5 °C would reduce water stress caused by climate change.

In this context, the Biodiversity Foundation of the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (MITECO), within the framework of the
Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan (PRTR), funded by the European Union – NextGenerationEU
funded by the European Union – NextGenerationEU supports transformative projects that seek to contribute to sustainable production applied in various food sectors.

Thus, the Association of Friends of the Center for Fauna Recovery (CRFS) of Valcalent develops Monumental olive groves for biodiversity a project that seeks to implement, in ancient and monumental olive groves, a ecological and sustainable agricultural management model (environmentally, economically and socially), through the production of high quality organic olive oil linked to the improvement of biodiversity and the conservation of natural heritage, as well as the creation of ecotourism resources linked to the olive grove.

The Foundation for the Conservation of the Bearded Vulture is carrying out the following project Pro-Biodiversity Livestockwhich seeks to promote a profitable and sustainable extensive livestock farmingand to contribute to generate quality food and sustainableThe company’s activities include, among others, maintaining ecosystems and biodiversity threatened by rural abandonment and creating jobs in areas affected by such abandonment.

For its part, BIORESILMEDdeveloped by Fundació Eurecates seeks to promote the bioeconomy, fostering biodiversity and increasing climate resilience of Spanish Mediterranean landscapes, represented by coastal wetlands and inland agricultural landscapes, through innovative practices that include pilot programs for woody crops and rice paddies for methane emission reduction and carbon sequestration, respectively.