World Water Day comes from the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development where an international observance for water was recommended. Since 1993 World Water Day has occurred annually.
The theme for this year’s World Water day is “Better water, better jobs”. You can watch the trailer below:
World Water Day is an opportunity to learn more about water related issues, be inspired to tell others and take action to make a difference. So in light of all of this we’re bringing you 10 things about water you may not know.
How much water do you need for one little cup of coffee?
140 litres! This is how much water it takes to grow the coffee beans, process them, package them and ship them.
How many people work in water-related sectors?
1.5 Billion! This number represents nearly half of the world’s workers and, nearly all jobs depend on water and those that ensure its safe delivery.
Why is World Water Day so important?
- An estimated 663 million people lack access to improved sources of drinking water.
- Humans are over-consuming natural resources.
- The total usable freshwater supply for ecosystems and humans is less than 1 % of all freshwater resources.
- Freshwater withdrawals have increased globally by about 1% per year since 1980’s, mainly due to growing demand in developing countries.
- Between 2016 and 2050, the world population is expected to grow from 7.4 billion to 9.3 billion people.
- Until 2050, the global food demand will rise by almost 70%.
There are 2 million work related deaths every year. How many out of those are water-related?
17%! Every hour, 38 workers die from water-related diseases. This is due to poor quality drinking water, poor sanitation, poor hygiene and a lack of knowledge.
What are the implications to female factory workers who work in environments with no sanitation facilities?
In some factories women use rags from the factory floor as menstrual cloths because there is no access to improved sanitation facilities. These cloths are charged with chemicals and often freshly dyed which can lead to infections and even death.
Did you know there was an international law of water?
Water is not confined to political borders. 46% of the globe’s (terrestrial) surface is covered by transboundary river basins.
Currently there is a high demand for training in the domain of international water law. The project e-Learning Capacity Development Project in International Water Law aims to address these training needs of countries sharing transboundary freshwater and groundwater resources.
Do you know the extent of Uganda’s water conditions?
- 82% of the population’s sanitation facilities in Uganda have no hand-washing facilities – only 8% have water and soap.
- Urban households travel 200 metres to the main source of water compared to 800 metres in rural areas.
- Only 15% of people have access to water on tap, despite improvements.
How polluted are our oceans?
40% of all the world’s oceans are polluted by humans. Watch the adorable animation by Saxion’ school students to illustrate this point.
Do you know your water footprint?
Based on your country of residence and your daily lifestyle, you will have a unique water footprint. You can do a basic calculation of yours here or go for in-depth over here. When I chose basic, mine was calculated at 1793 m³ per year, when I estimated in depth figures this decreased to 1285 m³ per year
Do you know how much Global agricultural food production accounts for water withdrawn from rivers and aquifers?
70 percent! And Climate change will only make matters worse. Modern irrigation is one of the success stories of the 20th century. As the world’s population doubled, irrigated farming expanded from 40 million hectares to almost 300 million hectares today – a seven-fold increase.
To learn more about Water, visit the UN Water organisation’s learn page – we guarantee you’ll find out at least one thing you did not, but should know.