Water Crisis Facts

Here are a handful of troubling statistics on the water crisis:
  • 783 million people in the world do not have access to safe water. This is roughly 11% of the world’s population. (WHO/UNICEF)
  • 2.5 billion people in the world do not have access to adequate sanitation, this is about 35% of the world’s population. (WHO/UNICEF)
  • 1.4 million children die every year as a result of diseases caused by unclean water and poor sanitation. This amounts to around 4,000 deaths a day or one every 20 seconds . (WHO)
  • Hand-washing with soap at critical times can reduce the incidence of diarrhea by up to 47%. (UN Water)
  • The weight of water that women in Africa and Asia carry on their heads is commonly 40 pounds, the same as an airport luggage allowance.
  • At any one time, half of the developing world’s hospital beds are occupied by patients suffering from diarrhea. (UNDP)
  • Intestinal worms infect about 10% of the population of the developing world. Intestinal parasitic infections can lead to malnutrition, anemia and stunted growth. (WHO)
  • Children in poor environments often carry 1,000 parasitic worms in their bodies at a time. (UNICEF)
  • Every year, around 60 million children in the developing world are born into households without access to sanitation . (UN Water)
  • In the developing world as a whole, around 90% of sewage is discharged untreated into rivers, polluting them and affecting plant and aquatic life. (UN)
  • People living in the slums often pay 5-10 times more per liter of water than wealthy people living in the same city. (2006 United Nations Human Development Report.)
  • In the past 10 years, diarrhea has killed more children than all the people lost to armed conflict since World War II. (blueplanetnetwork.org)
  • The average distance that women in Africa and Asia walk to collect water is six kilometers. (blueplanetnetwork.org)
Water Crisis Facts
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