Blog 4: The Freshwater Crisis and Disease

No one can deny that the freshwater crisis in Third World countries is a severe problem but one part of the crisis squeezes my heart a smidgen more than the rest; child deaths.

According to The Water Project 1 out of every 5 deaths of people under the age of five worldwide are due to water related diseases. states that 315,000 children under five die every year from diarrhoeal diseases alone, not including dehydration or being malnourished. Diarrhea is the leading cause of death of children under five in Sub-Saharan Africa and the second leading cause of death of children under five worldwide. Annually, 60 million children are born into homes without access to sanitation and every minute an infant dies from lack of safe water and a clean environment.

Access to clean water and sanitary places to live could prevent these deaths from happening completely. The Water Project discusses how the best way to access clean water in Africa would be to use groundwater but drilling for the water puts up the predicament of how much that would cost, not to mention finding a spot that would provide enough water for the large population in need of it.

In July of 2010 the United Nations General Assembly recognized that everyone in the world should have equal amounts of water for domestic and personal use, and more importantly that this water should be clean and safe to use. The physical accessibility of said water should only take at most a half an hour to retrieve. My question is why the statistic haven’t changed if this had been recognized? The amount of child deaths from waterborne diseases alone is still drastically large as is the amount of water being wasted on Agricultural and Industrial uses in first world countries. So what can we do?