Water use in developing countries

Today is Blog Action day 2010 organised by water.org to raise the awareness of the water crisis in developing countries.

Writing a blog about water issues is not the solution but it will help to make us think about the hugh discrepancies between the wealthy countries and the developing world. While we take our water consumption for granted, we often forget that something as simple as getting clean drinking water from a tap is still a dream for millions of people. The percentage of the population without access to safe drinking water is still much to low.

Water Facts:

  • Every 20 seconds a child dies from a water-related disease.
  • 890 million people lack access to safe water.
  • 2.5 billion people don’t have a toilet.
  • $25 brings one person clean water for life.
  • Over 200 million hours of labor each day are consumed each day to collect water.
  • The majority of the world’s illness is caused by fecal matter.
  • More people on earth have cell phones than toilets.

  • How are we wasting water
    This morning I woke up, went to the bathroom for my daily shower (80 litres of water), brushed my teeth and flushed the toilet (10 litres of water). Within 5 minutes after waking up, I used at least 90 litres of water.

    According to statistics, Australian households are amongst the highest domestic water users in the world. The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimated that

    in 2004-2005 the daily water consumption per Australian was 282 litres a day.

    (source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Water account, Australia, 2004-2005, ABS, Canberra, 2006).

    282 litres! Only households in the USA and Canada use more water.

    In many developing countries, water consumption is as low as 20 litres a day for the average person. This is what we used in Europe in the 19th century (!). We feel we are entitled to use water in large quantities for simple chores such as washing the car and the washing machine. But shouldn't we at least make an effort to make sure that every person on this earth has access to clean drinking water. That would make the world a better place.

    Please also check out this great video made by change.org:

    Blog Action Day 2010: Water from Blog Action Day on Vimeo.

    Blogging is not the solution to the water problem. But it does help if we can raise the awareness of the water issue, by writing about it.

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