While sustainable water management has been the talk for now many decades, successful water management is the one that is healthy and hygienic and suffices the basic needs of sanitation properly. According to the UN, about four of the ten people do not have access to clean water. And this ratio is staggering in a world where freshwater bodies can be just numbered on the fingertips. We need to convert the more public saltwater bodies into a safer water sources if we want to change its statistics.
Recycling disposable water, providing non-drinking water systems, and running programs for water management and awareness programs are critical. Urbanization is at its peak, with around half of the world’s population living in the cities. Also, Climate change is causing drastic effects on water levels and water bodies; it is vital to work on sanitation needs.
Sanitation and Poverty
The mortality rate of a country/breathing rate is highly linked to the overall economic health of that country. It is primarily seen that money is a tight resource in developing countries. In these countries, many people collect water from ponds and lakes, which are very unsafe. Most people, primarily women and children spend up to six hours a day collecting this dangerous water. This also robs them of the time that they can use to pursue their work or education or any other more important causes. Due to these, about 3.4 million people die worldwide from water-borne diseases each year, and most of them are young children.
Problems in Rural Areas of Developing Countries
Most developing countries’ urban populations face the challenges of their water supply needs that vary drastically from the rural ones. In rural areas, water is scarce. God forbid if there is any water source, it is polluted by surrounding urban areas with their industries releasing wastewater into these water bodies. Even if these people have a water body near them, the problem still lies with eliminating the pollutants from this water to make it usable and safe for use. Also, it needs a full-fledged system around it, which needs economic resources that these areas are already scarce.
Problems in Urban Areas of Developing Countries
Apart from this, if we think that urban areas are spared from the sanitation-related problem, we are mistaken. The problem persists and is aggravating due to these areas’ informal and unannounced urbanization. As the population in these areas increases day by day due to more people looking for jobs and stable livelihoods, urbanization is very random. There is no detailed roadmap being followed or a guide to locating these new populations and allocating healthy resources to them.
The water management systems in these areas need to be more vigilant and proactive in taking measures to provide healthy and clean water.
Measures to be taken individually
Also, the cause doesn’t just boil up to the management but the individual in particular. We can take just some simple steps towards our awareness for sanitation so that we make our health and not break it. A few of the essential steps that can change the sanitation game immensely are:
- Not defecating or urinating near water bodies
- Not cleaning or bathing in the water bodies
- Not polluting our water bodies with garbage.
- Not releasing any waste products into our water bodies
And last but not least, handling water as a life source and making sure to increase awareness around it.