OPINION: Are we really aware of the water crisis in the Yucatan?
A silent crisis has been brewing under our feet.
For those who are not aware of the problem, we are talking about a crisis that gets worse by the minute under the ground we step on.
Certainly, the alarm signals do not seem to be sounding.
In a sense, this reaction is understandable.
The younger generations simply “buy” purified and bottled water in one of its various “commercial” presentations; that is to say, that for a growing number of Yucatecans the mere concept of drinking water implies purified H2O in a bottle.
But the normal becomes questionable when we consider that 30 years ago many Yucatecans drank water “from the tap”, or “well”, not to mention that in several countries around the world buying bottled water is almost unthinkable -for example, in Scotland there are no jug water and it is equally safe to drink water from any tap in a house or business.
In Yucatan, half of the houses evacuate their wastewater containing all kinds of waste – mainly fecal waste – to the subsoil through sumps.
As a society, we need to accept the responsibility of properly informing ourselves and to guarantee our rights to access water, to enjoy a healthy environment.
Because, if we leave the issue in hands of our government, instead of informing us or tackling the problem, our leaders will keep on unceremoniously throwing us into the arms of the bottling companies -with the economic, social and environmental costs that this represents- Our Federal and State governments are not showing consideration towards clearly fundamental (and not renewable) resources, which deterioration implies a direct harm to the quality of life in Yucatan.
Antonio Salgado Borge, PhD in Philosophy (University of Edinburgh).