Senia Eben Rodríguez
Effects of multiple-use of water on users' livelihoods and sustainability of rural water supply services in Honduras
The de facto use of rural water supply systems for productive purposes is a practice that has only recently received recognition in Honduras. This paper presents the results of 14 case studies, which focus on the role of multiple-use of water in people's livelihoods as well as on sustainability in service provision. The extent of this practice differs significantly between different user categories, and ranges from the use of small amounts of water for a backyard garden and some animals, to complementary irrigation of field crops or livestock at commercial scale, though in this case often private sources of water are used. This de facto multiple use of water supply may bring risks to the sustainability of service provision. However, a number of relatively simple measures can be considered in regulating water use, thereby mitigating the risks. By adopting such measures more widely certain degrees of multiple-use of water can be accommodated into service provision without causing negative impacts, while still maintaining the positive impact on users’ livelihoods.