Clean water is something that we often take for granted. Just turn on the tap, and there it is. And while in some parts of the country, you might need to invest in a water filter to make it more palatable, it will never cause you harm. However, for millions of people around the world, access to clean water is a daily fight. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, over two billion people lack access to safe drinking water.
While it should be clear why clean water is essential for everyone, this piece is going to take a look at some individual reasons why and explore the impact it can have on people and communities.
The Importance of Universal Access to Safe and Healthy Water
1) The Health Benefits of Clean Water
Long story short – clean water is critical for good health. Without it, people are at risk of contracting waterborne illnesses like cholera, typhoid, and dysentery, which can cause dehydration, severe diarrhea, and even death. Clean water also plays a crucial role in sanitation, helping to prevent the spread of other diseases like hepatitis A and polio.
Without access to clean water, there are all types of bacteria that can be digested and cause significant health problems.
2) Clean Water is Essential for Agriculture
Water is a critical component of agriculture because, without clean water, farmers cannot grow crops or raise livestock. Water contaminated with chemicals and pollutants can harm crops and cause illness in animals, leading to a loss of income and reduced food security – something which some parts of the world are starting to experience for the first time in a long time.
3) The Economic Benefits of Clean Water
Clean water has significant economic benefits, which is a benefit that businesses might be interested in. Access to clean water can lead to increased productivity, as people are less likely to become sick and miss work. Not only that, but it can also lead to increased economic growth when you remove the obstacles that come with a lack of access to clean water. Take a look at a water resources engineering firm for more information on what you need to provide clean water at a site.
4) The Impact on Women and Children
In many parts of the world, especially those which are underdeveloped, access to clean water has a disproportionate impact on women and children because it is their responsibility to collect water for their families. This can be a really time-consuming and physically demanding task, taking up to six hours a day. What is even more concerning is that children are more vulnerable to waterborne illnesses, with diarrheal diseases being the second leading cause of death among children under the age of five.
Clean water is a human right that should be provided safely to everyone. The benefits will always be more important than the negatives, so if you are starting a construction project or creating a new building, the logistics of water have to be considered and sorted.