How capturing rain could save Mexico City from a water crisis
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
As is common in our world, those in Mexico with the least resources suffer the most. Low income and informal neighborhoods have the least access to safe water, exposing them to high health risks, such as diarrhea and parasitic and bacterial diseases. Many of them depend on pipas, or water trucks, which aren’t always reliable. The average Mexican family can spend up to 20% of its income on water.
More than 10 million Mexicans lack access to safe water and its capital, Mexico City, is ranked third on the list of cities facing an extreme water crisis. But this is not because of natural water scarcity. In fact, Mexico City receives roughly five months of rain a year and is notorious for flooding.
The problem is due to the the city’s infrastructure and mismanagement of water. In Mexico City, around 70% of water is extracted by aquifers, more than the amount that can be naturally recharged. The city was built over a lake bed and as such, has sunk 10 metres over the past 100 years.