Los Angeles

Will We Ever Have Clean Water for All?

Congolese refugees, displaced by fighting between the Congo army and rebel group Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) last week, gather around dry water taps at Bukanga transit camp LOCATION:
Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)
250 South Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA
Parking $9 at the Walt Disney Concert Hall garage. Enter from Second St., just west of Grand Ave.
A Zócalo/Occidental College Event
Moderated by Sanjeev Khagram, Occidental College Political Economist and Author of Dams and Development

Global leaders and philanthropists have spent trillions of dollars on infrastructure and services to ensure that people around the world have clean water. But we’re still nowhere near meeting this goal. Nearly 770 million people use unsafe drinking water sources. And 2.5 billion people—over a third of the world’s population—don’t have access to a toilet. In the United States, we take clean water for granted, but around the world it keeps children out of school, prevents adults from working, and kills millions of people every year. The problem isn’t that there’s not enough water to go around; the problem is that we don’t have any way to get it where it needs to go. What can be done—through economic incentives, engineering innovation, and policy changes—to get clean water to more people? Why have so many well-funded, high-profile efforts in this area accomplished so little? General manager of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Jeffrey Kightlinger, California State Water Resources Control Board chair Felicia Marcus, Arizona State University sustainability scholar Michael Hanemann, and Natural Resources Defense Council water program director Steve Fleischli visit Zócalo to discuss why, in our technologically advanced age, something so elemental is so difficult to transport and distribute.