The Sapopemba favela in São Paulo, the largest city in the Western Hemisphere. in 2015 after very low rainfall in the rainy season, the level of water in the reservoirs supplying São Paulo dropped dramatically and the city announced a severe water shortage. A strict water rationing system was imposed.
Many wealthy people responded by drilling their own wells, or by leaving the city to areas unaffected by drought, but many poorer people built or installed water tanks, which they hadn't needed until then, to store water that came when the mains supply was turned on for short periods often in the middle of the night. The water tanks can be seen in this picture.
Megacities across the world have high levels of water vulnerability, which is increasing as climate change and deforestation bring severe and prolonged droughts. Other examples of dramatic water shortages and drying reservoirs can be found across the US.
ACT member Christian Aid works with organisations that support community-based organisations in this community.
- Sean Hawkey, all rights reserved
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- Water, Water issues, Brazil