Environmentalists have raised concern over an increase in river bank cultivation, saying such practices are derailing all efforts towards water conservation.

Speaking during the World Water Day commemorations in Harare, environmentalist warned of high level siltation in major dams if urban farmers are left unchecked.

Wildlife and Environment Zimbabwe President, Professor Christopher Magadza called on the need to adopt strict monitoring mechanisms that stop river bank cultivation as it is increasing siltation of water reservoirs.

Lake Chivero has so far lost 18 percent of its carrying capacity to siltation, making it difficult to conserve water for future use.

Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) Corporate Communications and Marketing Officer, Mr Tsundirirai Shoriwa urged Zimbabweans to have a culture of serving wetlands as they play an important role in cleaning water before they reach reservoirs.

Guest speaker at the commemorations, Deputy Director in the Office of the Minister of State for Harare Provincial Affairs, Cde Ignatius Mungure also urged local authorities to devise means of re-using waste water as a way of saving water.

The World Water Day commemorations were held under the theme: ‘Why Waste Water.’