The Water Funds

Nature Based Solutions

community work
Atividade em campo Professora demonstra uma das atividades na Reserva Extrativista Tapajós Arapiuns. © Rodrigo Viellas

Our rivers, wetlands, floodplains, and forests provide essential ecosystem services that help to prevent floods, reduce erosion, and favor the conservation of biodiversity and the protection of coastal areas, to mention a few. Therefore, we must consider them as key components of the water infrastructure.

Transporting water from distant watersheds requires the construction of pipes, turbines, treatment plants, among other conventional gray infrastructure solutions that turn out to be very expensive to build and maintain. However, if the water sources dry, there wouldn’t be water to transport. Therefore, it is also necessary to promote innovative actions that combine nature-based solutions, or green infrastructure, with traditional solutions to generate the greatest value for societies.

Comparative table of solutions Both gray infrastructure and green infrastructure solutions are necessary to solve the water security challenges we face. Green infrastructure solutions complement and even improve the performance of gray infrastructure solutions.

Nature by itself generates solutions through which the infiltration of water into aquifers, soil retention, filtration processes that clean the water before reaching the rivers or the sea, among others, is favored. But when ecosystems have already been degraded, they lose the ability to perform these functions and it is necessary to restore them.

Nature-based solutions are inspired and supported by nature and use or mimic natural processes to contribute to improved water management. For example, the protection of water sources can maintain or improve groundwater resources by focusing on aquifer recharge zones or other sensitive areas of the territory.

Water Funds offer a diversity of solutions based on nature when carrying out studies that address local conditions, they manage to identify the root cause and have the possibility of proposing different alternatives of solutions with a long-term focus. Below are some of the nature-based solutions implemented by the Water Funds based to contribute to the water security of their cities:

in Latin America
Examples of solutions Some of the solutions based on nature, also known as natural infrastructure, more used by the Water Funds are shown. These are defined after making a diagnosis of the main sources of water that supply a city. These solutions must fulfill a specific function.