March 22 is World Water Day. Growing up, like many others, I did not appreciate how lucky I was to have clean, safe water. We need it to drink and become sick if we do not have it. We need it for agriculture and would become hungry without it. We need it for washing, bathing, and clean health care facilities. Likewise we need sanitation and hygiene to protect food, water, and health. One billion people around the world still lack clean drinking water and 2.6 billion lack access to basic sanitation. It doesn’t have to be this way. World Water Day is an opportunity to ask what we can do in the year ahead to address the world's water crisis.
World Water Day
World Water Day has come and gone. About 1.1 billion people still do not have access to safe drinking water, and two in every five people on the planet still have no access to a proper toilet. The international community has become increasingly aware of the disastrous consequences of the status quo for public health and economic growth. It will take more than awareness to change the current situation - it will also take political will, long term committment, and a new approach.
Every March 22nd since 1992 has been World Water Day. This year's theme is "Shared Waters and Shared Opportunities." 4,200 children die each day from preventable water-borne disease. Responding is not just a moral imperative, but sound economics. For each dollar spent on water and sanitation projects, the projected return on investment is from $3 to $34. For too many of us, a glass of contaminated water can mean the difference between life and death. You can help change this by taking part in the TAP Project during World Water Week.