Thursday, March 22, 2007
World Water Day
There are just a few minutes left of it, but it is worth noting that today is World Water Day. The theme this year revolved around the need to "cope" with the scarcity of water.
From the Environment News Service:
Water scarcity is a fact of life for 700 million people around the world, a figure that could rise to more than three billion by 2025, according to the United Nations. In a message today marking World Water Day UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for integrated cross-border water management since many of the world's rivers and aquifers are shared among countries.
. . .
Some 425 million of those without enough water are children under 18, said UNICEF Executive Director Ann Veneman, kicking off the Walk for Water Event in New York City today.
. . .
From Geneva, UN World Health Organization Director-General Margaret Chan noted that over 1.6 million people die every year because they lack access to safe water and sanitation, 90 percent of them among children under five, mostly in developing countries.
Diseases such as cholera, typhoid, malaria and dengue could rise due to climate change, which makes availability of freshwater less predictable because of more frequent flooding and droughts, Chan warned.
"For every child that dies, countless others suffer from poor health, diminished productivity, and missed opportunities for education. Much of this illness and death could be prevented using knowledge that has existed for many years," she said.
Chunn says simple conservation measures like turning off the faucet when brushing your teeth, shaving or rinsing vegetables can make a difference in our water supply. She also suggests using energy conservation appliances, including low-flush toilets.
Food for thought? Yup, please do think about it the next time you've got the faucet running.