Juba, 8 January 2022 (TDI): After the 22 years of civil war within Sudan, one of South Sudan’s lakes stands at being the poorest as well as largely-conflicted regions within the country.

It is marked by a large issue of scarcity of water along with a lack of provision of clean and safe water reserves. This issue is especially accelerated during the dry season and has led to the creation of conflicts within communities.

Given the resource of water is essential to life, the worsening situation around the globe of climate change will only accelerate such problems further, and such problems can lead to an increase in droughts. In fact, it will result in accelerating tensions, resulting in further communal division and duly, an increase in conflicts.

Moreover, considering the fact that Sudan is largely a country where its population is engaged in the primary sector of agriculture, drought will largely affect their incomes and thus their livelihoods. UNOPS (United Nations Office for Project Services) has proposed that infrastructure can play a key role in fighting climate change.

Their proposal is to look into infrastructure through a holistic approach, keeping in mind natural resources are constantly pressured with the high demand in the global economy. Investment into infrastructure is a way of assisting individuals in the long run and communities can be rebuilt on account of addressing their natural needs.

One example of how can this be made possible is through greater sustainable infrastructure for water. Water reservoirs that can be used by people along with their cattle can assist in fighting the issue of scarcity of water. When such a basic need is fulfilled, other areas needed for the growth of a society and democracy such as education and health can also be addressed.

UNOPS has been consistently working within the conflicted region of Sudan, for instance within South Sudan’s lakes, the international organization has assisted through the construction of reservoirs for water.

South Sudan Water reservoirs UNOPS
Boreholes constructed in South Sudan by UNOPS to extract water

This work was done through the close cooperation of the Lake State’s Ministry of Physical Infrastructure. The training was given to local workers through engineers in regards to construction methods along with the management of the water facility for the reason that the facility can be managed locally.

Similarly, other infrastructures such as police stations along with courts have been constructed in order to dismantle conflicts within the region. Such actions helped in reinventing economic opportunities through the reestablishment of law and order.