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The Growing Water
How it affects billions of people - and
We need clean water to live. And we can no longer take
it for granted.
A growing challenge
Getting clean water has always been a challenge. The Romans had
their magnificent aqueducts. Developed countries such as the USA have
complex water systems. Even here, pollution and growing demand create
In developing countries, the challenges are worse.
The United Nations’ Human Development project notes
In a world of unprecedented wealth, almost 2
million children die each year for want of a glass of clean water and
adequate sanitation. Millions of women and young girls are forced to
spend hours collecting and carrying water, restricting their
opportunities and their choices. And water-borne infectious diseases are
holding back poverty reduction and economic growth in some of the
world’s poorest countries.
Everywhere but scarce
The problem of access to water is compounded by the increasing
scarcity of fresh water on the planet. Water, not oil, is the world’s most
A report found at http://www.greenchipstocks.com/aqx_p/4615
Less than 2% of the water on earth is fresh water.
… if all the world's water were in a one-gallon jug, accessible fresh
water wouldn't even account for a teaspoon of it.
It is estimated that by 2025, over half of the world
will face freshwater shortages. This will increase to 75% by 2050.
Pollution and more
In developing countries, the problems of pollution, improper
waste disposal and poor water management are worse than here.
According to a John Hopkins study, all of India’s
major rivers and three-quarters of China’s major rivers are heavily polluted
and cannot sustain fish. Polluted waters contribute to outbreaks of diseases
- cholera, malaria, dysentery, typhoid fever and diarrhea, to name a few.
Sickness makes it much harder for people to lift themselves from poverty.
Steps toward a solution
The UN addresses the looming water shortage crisis in the Human
Development Report. It calls for nations to implement policies encouraging
water access and sanitation. It is clear that any solution to the water
crisis will be a costly, but necessary investment.
Currently the American government is considering such
a policy. Bill H.R. 80: Global Water Access and Equity Act is in the U.S.
House of Representatives. It aims to ensure that developing countries have
affordable and equitable access to safe water and sanitation. Passing this
Bill will solidify the American government’s responsibility in aiding global
What you can do
It’s easy for you to help support this bill.
Finding a solution is the responsibility of all
nations. And it can start with you:
Send a Letter
to Congress | Spread the word!
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by Lawrence Kreger with additions and editing by Audrey Lim, Hearts & Minds volunteers
Copyrights: Entire website © 1997 - 2015 by
Hearts and Minds Network, Inc., This web page - http://www.heartsandminds.org/poverty/articles/water.htm online July
16, 2011, latest changes
July 16, 2011