Earth, Planet water. Seventy-five percent of its surface is covered by water, but 97% of it is salty, with no conditions for people to use it on a daily basis. About 12% of the surface freshwater reserves in the world flow through Brazilian riverbeds. The problem is that these waters are concentrated in the North of the country, in the Amazon (80%), other regions, such as the Semi-Arid in the Northeast, suffer long periods of drought, with several social consequences. It is in this context that Paraíba becomes part of the Tropical Water Research Alliance, an Alliance between Brazil and Australia in the search for solutions to problems related to water in tropical ecosystems.
Paraíba is the third state in Brazil to sign the partnership, articulated by Professor José Etham de Lucena Barbosa, coordinator of the Laboratory of Aquatic Ecology at the State University of Paraíba, and the president of the Paraíba Research Support Foundation, Fapesq, Roberto Germano, around institutions and companies related to water such as Cagepa, the Executive Water Management Agency of the State of Paraíba and the National Semi-Arid Institute, with extensive infrastructure for research on the caatinga biome and has water resources as one of strategic themes.
Roberto Germano also says that he embraces the idea of building a historic alliance with the Tropical Alliance with national partners: “Initially, we worked to strengthen this alliance first within the National Council for Research Support Foundations, Confap, for the alliance to acquire the national character, which is advancing rapidly. Then, we had a dialogue with our state partners who recognize the extreme importance of this area – water management – for the development of our state “.
“Aliança Tropical acts as a governance of tropical waters”, explains José Etham. “This word governance is like an umbrella of complex actions that range from the execution of environmental projects in watersheds, legislation, water treatment, to the desalination of wells, among other actions. Looking at the hydrographic basin as a source and resource for populations living in and around it economically supports us makes us understand that this exploited resource needs to be managed in a way that respects its recovery time so that it is always there and is not extinct ”, Says José Etham.