Govt’s capacity constraints hinder action
What leaves people without water and sanitation?
It is not always a lack of water. It is often the inability of governments to invest and maintain public water infrastructure, not so much water poverty as “capacity poverty”.
It is manifest in failures in financial, institutional and political effectiveness as well as through technical constraints. To address these weaknesses, large aid programmes for water and sanitation are apportioned to the poor countries. Aid is an empathetic approach, but concessional loans and borrowings for water and sanitation by developing country governments are ever increasing. Why is this?
We know that poverty and environmental degradation are synonymous. Yet, not enough has been done to understand the cause-consequence relationship between the deterioration of economic conditions due to a shortfall in water and sanitation services. For example, the impact of poor quality water and sanitation services can manifest itself in degraded health and environmental conditions leading to a weaker economy. A weaker economy results in a diminished availability to leverage investments for water and sanitation, resulting in poor quality services. It is a vicious downward cycle.
Governments need to understand where and how they are positioned on the spiral of economic and environmental degradation. They
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