05 June 2023
Reading Time: 3 mins
05 June 2023
Reading Time: 3 mins
For World Environment Day, we’re bringing awareness to the growing water crisis in Sub Saharan Africa and the IoT solutions that are helping to rejuvenate communities across the region and protect the environment for future generations.
Some 829,000 people are estimated to die each year from diarrhoea due to unsafe drinking water, sanitation and hand hygiene (WHO). According to the UN’s Water and Sustainability goals, billions of people will lose access to clean drinking water by 2030 if more improvements aren’t made to these services. Experts predict that by 2025, close to 230 million Africans will be facing water scarcity, and up to 460 million will be living in water-stressed areas (African Development Bank). The tragedy is that diarrhoea is largely preventable, and the deaths of 297,000 children under 5 years could be avoided each year if these risk factors were addressed.
Even when water systems are installed, 65% break within the first two years, which adds to the mounting crisis in the most remote and disadvantaged communities (Eseye). Investing in climate-resilient green infrastructure provides a host of benefits throughout the economy and for the environment, namely, generating jobs, alleviating poverty, and diminishing the impact of climate change on Africa’s most vulnerable.
But with challenges come innovation. That’s why eWATER services partnered with Eseye to design and develop an IoT connected tap that would improve access to clean drinking water. The solution makes it easy for users to pay for water using mobile technology. The use of mobile technology improves the transparency and accountability of user fees and activity, and also ensures sustainable water system maintenance. Each eWATER tap fully integrates IoT, near field communication (NFC) and mobile money to manage the provision of 24/7 clean, low-cost water.
A core challenge was how to scale the eWATER project and achieve the required connectivity coverage, especially in rural parts of Sub-Saharan Africa where the water crisis was most prevalent. Using Eseye’s highly-available cellular connectivity solutions, eWATER has maintained near 100% uptime, ensuring payments are securely made using an eWATER tag and dispensers communicate seamlessly with eWATER’s payments software. This provides real-time payments and water usage data. More than 367,000 people have used eWATER’s taps and over 1 billion litres of water have been dispensed. As a result, these water services reduce the need for single use plastic and bottled water therefore preserving the natural environment of Sub-Saharan Africa.
Additionally, the bolstering of water supply in water scarce regions improves the agricultural output of local farmers which in turn allows them to invest in climate smart agricultural (CSA) practices resulting in lower emissions.
eWATER Services have secured an agreement in Kenya to guarantee 24/7 access to clean water for a minimum of 10 years, following a number of meetings with County Governors, Water Services Providers Association (WASPA), and the regulator WASREB and Central Government Ministries in Tharaka-Nithi County.
Alison Wedgewood, the CEO and founder of eWATER services had this to say about the deal, “We signed an MoU with the Governor of Tharaka-Nithi County. I’m sure this will only be the first of many such dynamic relationships that we build in Kenya, and I cannot wait to see how this evolves.”
IoT is changing the environment we live in. For the better. Reliably connected IoT solutions like eWATER’s are transforming communities in Tharaka-Nithi County and enhancing their quality of life—one connection at a time.
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Eseye brings decades of end-to-end expertise to integrate and optimise IoT connectivity delivering near 100% uptime. From idea to implementation and beyond, we deliver lasting value from IoT. Nobody does IoT better.
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