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    Review of 'The Impacts of Covid-19 Pandemic and Weather Conditions on Water Environment, a Case Study in Istanbul and London/South-east England'

    The Impacts of Covid-19 Pandemic and Weather Conditions on Water Environment, a Case Study in Istanbul and London/South-east EnglandCrossref
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        Rated 4 of 5.
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    Reviewed article

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    The Impacts of Covid-19 Pandemic and Weather Conditions on Water Environment, a Case Study in Istanbul and London/South-east England

    The Covid-19 Pandemic affects not only populations around the world but also the environment and natural resources. Lockdowns and restricted new lifestyles have had wide ranging impacts on the environment (e.g., on air quality in cities). Although hygiene and disinfection procedures and precautions are effective ways to protect people from Covid-19, they have important consequences for water usage and resources especially given the increasing impacts of climate change on rainfall patterns, water use and resources. Climate change and public health issues may compound one another and so we used a DPSIR Framework to scope the main factors that may interact to affect water use and resources (in the form of reservoirs) using evidence from Istanbul, Turkey with some discussion of the comparative situation in the UK and elsewhere. We modified initial views on the framework to account for the regional, city and community level experiences. We noted water consumption in Istanbul has been increasing over the last two decades (except, it appears, in times of very low rainfall/drought); that there were increases in water consumption in the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic; and, despite some increase in rainfall, water levels in reservoirs appeared to decrease during lockdowns (for a range of reasons). We also noted, through a new simple way of visualising the data, that a low resource capacity might be recurring every 6 or 7 years in Istanbul. We made no attempt in this paper to quantify the relative contribution that climate change, population growth etc are making to water consumption and reservoir levels as we were focused here on scoping those social, environmental and economic factors that appear to play a role in potential water stress and on developing a DPSIR Framework that could aid both subsequent quantitative studies and the development of policy and adaptive management options for Istanbul and other large complex conurbations (such as London and south-east England). If there are periodic water resource issues and temperatures rise as expected in climate projections with an accompanying increase in the duration of hot spells the subsequent additional stress on water systems might make managing future public health emergencies, such as a pandemic, even more difficult.

      Review information

      This work has been published open access under Creative Commons Attribution License CC BY 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Conditions, terms of use and publishing policy can be found at www.scienceopen.com.

      water,adaptive management,covid-19,Environmental science,Climate change,patterns of use,Water resources,water management,climate

      Review text

      The article is highly original in that it is the first time a DPSIR framework has been used to study the effects of Covid-19 and climate change on water consumption.

      Some parts of the article are written too long. A shorter and simpler narrative style will be correct in terms of attracting the reader's attention.

      Due to one of the sample areas of the article is Istanbul, it would be more accurate to replace the municipality of Bolu street disinfection photo in Figure 5 with a photo from Istanbul.


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