The water sector as a critical industry has shown its ability to adapt fast during the corona crisis. Hardly any major break-downs of water supply have been reported. It is worth complimenting the water sector for having passed this major test of resilience.

The corona crisis has been playing out globally for almost half a year now. Even though the number of daily new cases is still on the rise, the number of daily deaths globally seems to be falling – with all the uncertainty there is in the global numbers. Still we don't know when this will end and many questions still remains to be answered, but it is as if we have increased our personal, national and global proficiency in regard to managing the disease. Hence, we seem to slowly shift from emergency mode to learning mode and the number of articles and papers on what we are learning from this global crisis is increasing.

One example is from the field of wastewater. New methods to trace the spread of SARS-Cov2 virus in municipal wastewater systems seem promising. Based on the detection of RNA strands in wastewater the methods can potentially help communities monitor the prevalence of the virus in its population and be an important early warning for second or third waves of epidemics. The disease monitoring technology has been discussed for a few years now, but what recently seemed like a futuristic idea of monitoring the general health in communities now moves into reality faster than imagined.

What else has the water sector learned?

Has the activation of emergency operations taught us anything new about emergency preparedness?

Has the temporary re-appearance of wildlife close to our communities taught us something new about our role in nature regeneration?

Has the change in how we work opened venues for changes in how we may work in the future?

Has the change in the economical landscape created new opportunities or have opportunities been lost?

Has the highlight on the precarious situation of people and communities without access to clean water changed the impetus for alleviating this situation in a surge of solidarity?

Has the temporary quieting down in research labs and project offices created space for new insights as to where the water sector must move in the coming years?

Here at AQUA, we welcome papers that describe how the coronavirus has or over time may change the urban water cycle. Hence, we invite research papers, practitioner case studies and reflective papers on the COVID-19 crisis and what may follow.

Feel free to submit your insights:

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