Global Water Crisis

Over 4 billion cases of diarrhea occur worldwide each year, which result in about 2.2 million deaths. Approximately 86% of those deaths occur among children under the age of five years. Diarrhea not only leads to mortality in young children but also contributes to a host of other health problems, such as malnutrition.

Approximately 88% of diarrheal disease is related to unsafe water and lack of sanitation facilities. An estimated 1.1 billion people worldwide do not have access to clean and safe water. Increasing the number of people who have a reliable source of safe drinking water is a key component in reducing diarrheal disease prevalence.

The need for improvements in safe drinking water worldwide has recently received an increasing amount of attention as a high priority global health topic. Goal Seven on the United Nations list of Millennium Development Goals is to halve, by 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation. In order to achieve this goal, it will be necessary for nearly 100 million people to gain access to an improved drinking water source every year. Although this appears to be a costly goal, the World Health Organization estimates that every $1 U.S. dollar invested will yield an economic return of between $3 and $34 U.S. dollars.. As we improve the most basic of services for the nations in the developing world, we’ll increase their ability to be true global trade partners in a way that will benefit all of the world’s citizens.