Water contamination, a third world country problem far from the grasp of many, a distant problem. Well what if I told you that it took the strongest economy in the world almost 3 years to fix a serious water contamination issue in just one of their cities? Flint a small city in Michigan Detroit experienced a water crisis that started in 2014. The city moved from having it’s water being supplied from Detroit to using the Flint river for cost reducing means as the city was experiencing financial issues. However the reason for Detroit water plants cost being high was due to the good quality of water treatment, so moving away from it meant water quality would drop, but Flint’s misfortunes did not end there. The Flint river water was also a lot more corrosive than the one provided from the Detroit water plant and again to cut costs it was decided that no anti corrosive chemicals will be used. This aside from being a stupid decision within itself to provide people with acidic water also resulted in it eating away at the old piping lines that were made from lead. This shot the lead concentration to 13,200 ppb! What the hell is ppb you may be asking, how much is too much? Well let's put it this way the title “hazardous waste” is given to water containing 5000 ppb....yea let that sink in. The people of Michigan where drinking water almost 3 times over what is considered “hazardous waste”. Now I can provide you a 10 page list of things that were done wrong, but I will spare you. Oh and just one more thing lead poisoning damages the nervous system causing mental retardation, birth defects and many more.
So why am I writing about this in MUNPlanet well with the United Nations having set the Sustainable Development Goals to be reached by 2030 one of them being “Clean Water and Sanitation”, I want to point out how far away we are from solving such issues. 3 years for a small city in the United States to solve such a water problem what should we expect for the rest of the world especially countries whose economy is not the 1st largest in the world? The good part is that the United Nations work as a bigger organization to help these smaller countries with water problems, but to be completely honest with you I am scared to think how these issues are handled in foreign countries if people in power mistreat their own people like this. On the bright side there are many people truly motivated to help the world, but solving the issue should start by tighter control of people who get appointed to these sort of jobs to be ones who are truly motivated not doing the job just to get payed or help their own benefits which was the case in Michigan. My main point I am trying to get out across here is that aside from setting goals we need to make sure we appoint people of proper qualification on projects that are made to help, so the projects intended to reach the Sustainable Development Goals doesn’t leave us further behind than we already were.
Fast forward three years to January 24th 2017 The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has stated that test of Flint water have come saying that contamination is below federal limits. That is a good forward movement, but damage has been done that cannot be reversed. Aside from the health complication that people experienced from this period of having unsanitary water the real estate price of their homes have fallen to virtually being worthless as no one would be interested in buying land in a place where there is no sanitary water. So what do you think are we able to tackle the water crisis on a global level by 2030 if it takes 3 years to solve it in a developed country like the United States? Should regulations be stricter in the United Nations when appointing people to projects to avoid situations like what happened in the United States? Let me know in the comments.