Lusaka, the capital of Zambia with over 2,000,000 inhabitants, is built on an extensive plateau composed mainly of schists and dolomitic marbles, constituting a very important aquifer that provides the city with almost half of its drinking water needs. Recent demographic growth, leading to uncontrolled urban expansion, and mismanagement of the water resource and of urban waste has lead, in the past 20 years, to an overexploitation of the aquifer and to a generalised water quality depletion, putting in serious danger the future social and economical development of the capital. This third world city has, for these reasons, become a terrifying example of human impact on a vulnerable karst environment, and if no measures will be taken in the very near future, quality of life in the city will be at serious risk.



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