Happy World Water Day friends!
As a political science student, specializing in International Relations and Peace & Conflict Studies, and as a wife to a civil engineer who specialized in water, I have a keen interest in global issues - one of which is our diminishing water supply. So here's 10 facts from the UN's World Water Day website that you should know about water to keep you thinking about one of the most precious resources in the world and what our role is in being responsible stewards with it!
1. World Water Day has been celebrated since March 22, 1993
2. 85% of the world population lives in the driest half of the planet.
3. 783 million people do not have access to clean water and almost 2.5 billion do not have access to adequate sanitation.
4. 6 to 8 million people die annually from the consequences of disasters and water-related diseases.
5. Various estimates indicate that, based on business as usual, ~3.5 planets Earth would be needed to sustain a global population achieving the current lifestyle of the average European or North American.
6. Pollution knows no borders either. Up to 90% of wastewater in developing countries flows untreated into rivers, lakes and highly productive coastal zones, threatening health, food security and access to safe drinking and bathing water
7. Over 80% of used water worldwide is not collected or treated.
8. Water availability is expected to decrease in many regions. Yet future global agricultural water consumption alone is estimated to increase by ~19% by 2050, and will be even greater in the absence of any technological progress or policy intervention.
9. Water for irrigation and food production constitutes one of the greatest pressures on freshwater resources. Agriculture accounts for ~70% of global freshwater withdrawals (up to 90% in some fast-growing economies).
10. About 66% of Africa is arid or semi-arid and more than 300 of the 800 million people in sub-Saharan Africa live in a water-scarce environment – meaning that they have less than 1,000 m3 per capita.
p.s. ♥ clara