UN Report Warns , Growing Number of People , Face Water Scarcity.
On March 21, the United Nations released a report warning
that 26% of the world's population, approximately
2 billion people, lack access to safe drinking water. .
According to NPR, the report comes
on the eve of the U.N.'s first conference on
the topic of water in over 45 years. .
The U.N.'s World Water Development Report 2023 revealed that 46% of people lack access to basic
sanitation globally, equal to about 3.6 billion people. .
NPR reports that the U.N. has laid out
a goal to ensure that all people in the world
have access to clean water by 2030.
According to Richard Connor, editor-in-chief of the
report, meeting the goal will require somewhere
between $600 billion and $1 trillion per year. .
Connor said that with 70% of the world's
water use going to agriculture, it becomes
critical for irrigation to be more efficient. .
According to the U.N.'s Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization (UNESCO) report, as climate change
continues, water scarcity is expected to increase. .
Seasonal water scarcity will increase in
regions where it is currently abundant —
such as Central Africa, East Asia and parts
of South America — and worsen in regions
where water is already in short supply, such
as the Middle East and the Sahara in Africa, World Water Development Report 2023, via NPR.
An increase in intensity or frequency of droughts
and 'heat extremes' can be expected in most
regions as a direct result of climate change.
The UNESCO report states that an average
of 10% of the world's population already lives
in an area with high or critical water stress.
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