During the 21st century, water and wastewater management is likely to be one of the most critical resource issues that the Latin American and the Caribbean countries will have to face. All the countries of the region are already facing serious problems in terms of how best to provide a reliable water supply for all uses, and then how to treat the resulting wastewaters adequately. With increasing population growth and accelerating human activities, the regions’ water problems are likely to get worse, unless the existing water management processes are significantly improved within a short period of time. There are, however, signs of hope since countries like Brazil are making major advances. Developing countries need to learn from such success stories, instead of relying exclusively on western experiences and technology to solve their water and wastewater management problems promptly and cost-effectively.
By Asit K. Biswas, 1998. Article published in International Journal of Water Resources Development, Volume 14, Issue 3, pages 293-303.