Pacific Organic & Ethical Trade Community

Goal 6: Clean Water And Sanitation

Ensure Availability and Sustainable Management of Water and Sanitation for All

The Pacific region is a region of a thousand Islands distributed across 180 million square kilometres of Ocean. Ironically, it faces increasing water woes as underground water lenses are threatened by:

  • overuse and contamination due to rapidly increasing population numbers and land-based activities;
  • droughts, flooding and inundation brought on by climatic changes; and
  • inefficient and inadequate water management skills.

Eutrophication of water from land activities, including agricultural chemical use has been identified as the major environmental threat to Pacific aquatic ecosystems. Organic agricultural practices eliminate the use of agrichemicals; therefore, minimising the seepage of chemicals into underground water reserves and river systems of island countries.

Organic practices and production systems also provide valuable ecosystem services, ensuring appropriate forest cover is maintained, improving soil structure and maintaining the balance of microorganisms in soils. These serve as natural purifiers that remove chemicals and contaminants in water as it passes through the soil to underground reserves.

Organic Agriculture not only eliminates the use of chemical pollutants in agriculture but also efficiently provides a solution to protecting the purity of current water reserves for safer use in the Pacific.


  1. Eutrophication is the increase in nutrients in a water body, increasing the plant and algal growth, which may upset ecosystem balance.
  2. Secretariat of the Pacific Community, (2011) Fresh WATER under THREAT: Pacific Islands: Vulnerability Assessment of Freshwater Resources to Environmental Change Suva, Fiji Islands: . Pg.20.
  3. Ecological Society of America (1997) Revealing secrets about ‘natural water purification’ – Water purification: An Essential Ecosystem Service. Washington, DC. Pg. 1.

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