The United Nations’ Millennium Project
Water Goals of the Millennium Project
Water Goals in Rural and Urban Areas
Progress Toward Meeting Water Goals
Water Goals and Our Future
Posted on 19 May 2011.
Posted in The Global Water CrisisComments Off
Posted on 18 May 2011.
In July of 2010, the United Nations declared access to safe drinking water a human right. This resolution follows years of global campaigning to bring recognition to the problems of safe water and sanitation access. About 884 million people cannot access safe drinking water, and more than 2.6 billion people cannot access basic sanitation. More than two million people die annually due to a lack of clean drinking water and diseases caused by contaminated water. Diarrhea caused by drinking infected water is the second largest cause of the death of children under five years old.
Improvements in water and sanitation systems in developing areas of the world are directly linked to improvements in overall quality of life. Implementation of closed sanitary systems decreases child mortality by one-third. Access to clean water increases human productivity and overall health. Also, since access to water is often subject to discriminatory practices based on class, race, or gender, wider access to water can aid social equality in developing regions.
Both the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations (UN) have begun programs to improve global access to drinking water and sanitation. The UN has declared the time period between 2005 and 2015 an International “Water For Life” Decade, during which massive educational and developmental programs have been implemented to increase the world’s access to water and sanitation. The WHO also has several programs in place that intervene in areas where water access is at risk; these programs educate people about water management and sanitation.
Education is vital to the drive for water and sanitation access. Undereducated populations need to understand the risks of using contaminated water. Local and governmental authorities need to learn the costs and advantages of developing new water distribution programs. People need to learn techniques for harvesting rainwater, creating wells, and treating, storing, and distributing water. Programs that help to build and install these systems are also very helpful.
The discrepancy between clean water access in the industrial world and in the developing world is alarming. Although this discrepancy has tapered in recent years, the problem of water access continues to plague much of the world’s population. People in privileged parts of the world continuously need to assist the less fortunate in their struggle for health and dignity. People who wish to help the UN and WHO to meet their goals can visit their websites for more information on how to donate time and money to their cause.
Posted in World ConservationComments Off
Posted on 16 May 2011.
Access to water is vital, but access to clean water is even more critical. Today, approximately one billion people do not have access to clean water, which has severely harmed the health and economic development of the most affected regions. Further, according to UNICEF, lack of safe water is the world’s single largest cause of illness. Lack of clean water can cause afflictions such as river blindness, cholera, diarrhea, dysentery, and a number of other diseases and infections. The global water crisis is not unsolvable, though. Countries around the world are actively pursuing solutions such as reduction of pollution, infrastructure building, desalinization, improved irrigation, and more.
• A person needs 7.5 to 15 liters a day for survival. Included in this are figures for drinking water, hygiene and cooking.
• On average, women in Africa and Asia walk about 6 kilometers to collect water.
• More than 3½ million people die each year from water-related diseases.
• A child dies every 20 seconds from a water-related disease.
In man’s effort to stay safe, he has found ways to treat water. Water treatment occurs before the water enters a house. Unfortunately, water treatment is so simplistic that many people are still concerned for population safety. Sewage treatment is done on used water before it re-enters the source, such as a river or under ground supply. Sewage treatment speeds the process of eutrophication, or the aging process of water, and creates favorable breeding grounds for disease that would not be as concentrated if nature took care of itself. Taking the larger particles from sewage water is acceptable, but the later-stage biological processes are what cause eutrophication.
Access to water and particularly, clean water will always present a major problem to the human race. Unfortunately, there are too many people needing too many resources from the planet.
Posted in World ConservationComments Off