World Water Day – Water for Peace!

Urednik Blog, Expert service news, News

World Water Day, which we celebrate every year on March 22, was established by the United Nations in 1993 to raise awareness of the importance of water to our lives and the need for its sustainable use. The theme of this year’s celebrations is “Water for Peace”.

Unfortunately, this vital resource is still not available to everyone. Although around 71% of our planet is made up of water, only 2.5% of it is freshwater, of which only 1% is available for use. Water is not evenly distributed across the globe, leaving almost 2.2 billion people without access to safe drinking water today. Climate change and steady population growth further increase the water crisis and require urgent action.

Water has always been able to create peace, but also to cause conflicts between nations and states. Very often, water bodies have formed natural borders between countries. The Plitvice Lakes are another example of such a division, as the border between the Ottoman Empire and the Habsburg Monarchy used to pass through Lake Kozjak, which can be seen on Wagner’s map from 1770. Even today, more than 3 billion people around the world depend on water that crosses national borders. Of the 153 countries that share rivers, lakes and aquifers with their neighbors, only 24 countries have cooperation agreements for their shared water.

Water plays a particularly important role in the Plitvice Lakes National Park. It creates tufa barriers, waterfalls and lakes, is a habitat for numerous plants and animals, and serves to supply drinking water and other human needs. Today, the water of Plitvice Lakes connects people with each other and with nature.

This year, we will also celebrate World Water Day by educating the eighth-grade students of Plitvička Jezera Elementary School and Dr. Franjo Tuđman Elementary School about the importance of water and the need to protect it, and we have organized another opportunity for all visitors, residents and employees of the Park to celebrate the day. From March 21 to April 12, an international ceramic exhibition entitled “Water – the liquid of life” was set up in the winter garden of the Hotel Jezero, the design of which was inspired by water in all its manifestations.