Estimated reading time: 8 minute(s)
A joint report released by the World Bank, World Health Organisation(WHO) and the United Nations International Childrens Fund (UNICEF) has urged countries to invest strategically in other to attain the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target of reaching safely managed drinking water for all by 2030.
The report which was released on Monday in Geneva, Switzerland asked countries to scale up investments that would achieve universal access to safe drinking water and mitigate the effects of climate change.
The agencies explained that governments must invest strategically in building safe drinking water systems by not only increasing funding, but also strengthening capacities to plan, coordinate, and regulate service provision, if the world is to achieve universal access to safe drinking water and mitigate the effects of climate change.
The report also urged countries to ensure that relevant data and information are available to better understand inequalities in drinking water services and make evidence-based decisions and encourage innovation and experimentation through supportive government policy and regulation, accompanied by rigorous monitoring and evaluation.
The Global Director, World Bank Group’s Water Global Practice, Saroj Kumar Jha, said that it is healthier children that become healthier adults who then contribute more to the economy and society.
He added “this principle is at the core of the World Bank’s Human Capital Project.”
Jha advised that governments and private sector should take critical action now to accelerate inclusive and sustainable water supply and sanitation services in both urban and rural areas.
He added that in order to provide universal access to safe drinking water by 2030, governments and partners must dramatically increase political commitment to drinking water and quadruple investments.
WHO Director, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health, Dr. Maria Neira, said: “Climate change is increasing the frequency and intensity of droughts and floods, which exacerbate water insecurity, disrupt supplies and devastate communities.
“Meanwhile rapid urbanisation is increasing the strain on cities’ capacity to deliver water to the millions of people living in in-formal communities and slums.
“Providing greater access to safe drinking water has saved many lives, most of them children. But climate change is eating into those achievements.
“We have to accelerate our efforts to ensure every person has reliable access to safe drinking water something that is a human right, not a luxury.”
UNICEF Interim Director of Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) and Climate, Environment, Energy, and Disaster Risk Reduction (CEED), Aidan Cronin, said that “No child should be faced with the choice of drinking dirty water – a leading killer of children – or making dangerous journeys to collect water and missing out on school.
“Accessible and reliable safe drinking water is fundamental to ensuring children are healthy, educated, and thriving.”
Estimated reading time: 1 minute(s)
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