Access to Clean Drinking Water Project in Uganda

Shockingly, about 45% of the rural population of Uganda does not have access to clean drinking water. People are constantly exposed to contaminated water which forces them to inefficiently burn wood fuel indoors to purify their drinking water.

The smoke which is generated during the cooking process poses a high risk to humans and often leads to severe eye irritation or respiratory diseases. But these unbearable conditions aren’t the only crucial factors that demand change: The great amount of greenhouse gas emissions and the ongoing deforestation are equally alarming.

This is where BE CLIMATE comes in. In our search for a third carbon offset project, which would help us compensate our unavoidable emissions, we found the Clean Drinking Water Project in Uganda, offered by our partner ClimatePartner. This project found a solution for supplying households with clean drinking water, using a technique that doesn’t require any fuel, neither wooden nor fossil. The “Improved Kitchen Regimes” programme tackles the problem with a borehole technology that minimizes firewood burning and, by doing so, significantly reduces the carbon dioxide emissions of the process.

The access to clean drinking water project in greater detail

The aim of the project is to repair pre-existing wells by cooperating with community-based organizations (CBO). The involvement of local people increases awareness among the population and promotes not only the recycling effect, but also the responsible and sustainable use of resources they actually own. The project is constantly determining which boreholes are feasible to repair in terms of community interest, participation, and technical viability. Once the rehabilitation process is complete, the extracted groundwater can be additionally cleaned either chemically (e.g. with chlorine) or mechanically (with filters), if necessary.

All boreholes are operated with hand pump models, there is no automation or machinery involved. To ensure constant quality of boreholes and water, an annual maintenance programme has been set up.

How much pure water is needed per unit to achieve a sustainable reduction of emissions?

Ex-ante calculations showed that five boreholes should be the maximum number to be rehabilitated in one Voluntary Project Activity (VPA). They make a reduction of 10,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions possible; and with a project duration of a minimum of seven years, there is no necessity to support new drilling.

Our contribution to the UN Sustainable Development Goals

We see various benefits on an environmental, social, and economic level: The project guarantees a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions with an annual saving of 90.000 tons of CO2 and the preservation of non-renewable biomass from existing forest stocks. The aim is to protect natural eco-systems and the wildlife by avoiding deforestation and to regulate the water table level to prevent flash flooding. The significant reduction of indoor pollutants will mean fewer diseases. By creating a time saving of the previous water purifying process, women get the opportunity to access work and education – a first step to gender equality. Local communities are being integrated in all the processes to raise awareness of how to improve their situation.

By providing employment, a boom of the rural economy is inevitable. The reduction of costs for fuel gives the communities a chance to invest money in food, healthcare, and high-quality education instead.

You would like to know what your support could be? Learn more about the contribution you make when you buy our climate-neutral products.

Our carbon offset projects are in line with many SDGs. This project focuses on: