Urban Water Resilience

As cities grow, urban water management become increasingly important. Urban water system need to deliver multiple services under increasing stress. Future water resources need to be secured in a time of climate change, and management needs to deal with rising demand, aging systems, and the risk of disaster. The situation is even more complex in countries that are facing internal conflicts and war. Resilience is a key principle to build  water systems of cities towards sufficient water resources for all.

We promote the development of cities – large, medium-sized and small – by helping them to increase water use efficiency and water safety and to enhance the resilience of their water systems looking at the water cycle from ‘source to tap and back’ and to have robust management systems. Our strong links to city planner, urban dwellers and experts across the continents ensure effective implementation and impacts.

Urban water resilience
Jumbo Tank

Our approach consists of:

  • Introducing better crisis-resistant management – in service delivery, customer relations, staff management, finance, reducing non-revenue water, asset management and safe water handling at household
  • Integrating urban planning and water management, to secure water resources, reduce the risk of floods and to increase quality of life: developing ‘sponge’ cities
  • Strengthening the relation between the city and the surrounding area and its economy to assure cooperation in watershed protection, groundwater management and water quality management – including urban wetlands
  • Underpin these approaches by community awareness campaigns and setting up visitor’s centers. For instance we deployed awareness campaign with Google Earth engine and Kobo toolbox. Read more here.

Project Highlights

Jumbo Tank

Sponge Town - Kenya

The aim of a sponge town is to make the best out of water extremes of floods and droughts by means of its buffer function. The project was financed by the ViaWater programme supported by Aqua4All and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. This project tested concepts and technologies for sponge town in Kajiado and Kwa Vonza, Kenya. Based upon the experience and learnings, we developed a guideline for building sponge town, available at the documentation section.

Source to Tap and Back - Ethiopia

This project builds a public private partnership (PPP) to introduce and consolidate a collaborative framework for water resources protection in the municipality of Addis Ababa and the region of Oromia. The PPP supports the set up and implementation of the framework by introducing Water Safety Plans, in which both the capacity of partners Addis Ababa Water and Sewerage Authority (AAWASA) and Adama Town Water Supply and Sewerage Service Supply (AWSSE) to deal with non- revenue water will increase. The project also demonstrates small infrastructural measures in the catchment areas of potable water to increase water availability and its quality in the cities of Addis Ababa and Adama.