Water news: Water supply – how are we doing?

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Despite many successful water projects, billions of people still lack adequate water and sanitation.
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Water news:

Water supply: How are we doing?



The 2012 report by UN-Water Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-Water (GLAAS) spells out an optimistic yet cautious message in the run-up to the 2015 Millennium Development Goals. Lack of information is, for now, a key issue according to the report.

“The scarcity of information on national sanitation and drinking-water-related policies, financing and human resources was a major barrier to progress. It also results from the dearth of exact knowledge concerning the status of and trends in development assistance,” claims the Chairperson of UN Water, Michel Jarraud, in the foreword.

Despite the increased access to potable water, the report concludes that while this is encouraging, there are still 780 million people who are unserved with drinking water and 2.5 billion with no access to improved sanitation. Furthermore, the report indicates that “resources are neither targeted nor apparently sufficient to sustain routine operation and maintenance requirements. Thus, there is a serious risk of slipping backwards on gains already made”.

“In many countries, policies and programmes have far too little emphasis on ensuring adequate financial and human resources to both sustain the existing infrastructure and expand access to sanitation, drinking-water and hygiene services. The danger of slippage against the MDG target is a real one”.

The Millennium Development Goals as regards access to drinking water were met by 2010 – between 1990 and 2010m over two billion people gained access to drinking water and 1.8 billion people gained access to improved sanitation conditions. However, sustained success is at risk, partly because of lack of funding and in part due to a lack of political will.

Does it not speak volumes about the animal Humankind continues to be, and does it not make a telling comment on our collective development, that billions are spent on arming terrorists to overthrow governments unpopular with the countries which represent western corporate greed (the FUKUS Axis – France, UK and US) yet we cannot even guarantee access to a basic need – water – for all the world’s population?

Maybe those selling weapons to terrorists and invading countries to sow chaos and havoc should be deprived of water to see what it is like. After all, we are speaking of the same countries which bombed Libya’s water supply “to break their backs”.

Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey


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