UN Sustainable Development Goals: Water Sanitation
Updated: Jul 1
Clean Water is the quintessential principle of Water justice. Without clean Water, humans are deprived of an irreplaceable life-dependent resource. The United Nations’s Sustainable Development Goal #6 states: to ensure availability and sustainable management of Water and sanitation for all.
The United Nation reports that in 2020 roughly 2 billion people lacked safely managed drinking Water. This means that the Water being consumed is not monitored for harmful contaminants, leaving this group of people incredibly exposed to disease and chronic conditions that result from contaminated Water. For example, The Cancer Treatment Center of America produced a study where they found “drinking water contains carcinogens and that the contamination may be responsible for more than 100,000 cases of cancer” (CTCA). The very thing that humans depend on to live should not be the same thing that contributes to terminal illness.
Currently, 129 countries are not on track to have sustainably managed Water resources by 2023. This means that these countries lack resources to test their Water for contaminants and mitigate unclean sources. In order for the world to be on track with the United Nations’s goal, the current rate of progress in developing sustainably managed Water resources would need to double.
Additionally, during the age of COVID-19, securing clean Water is paramount. To fight this pandemic, people need to be able to wash their hands knowing that this action will eradicate germs and disease, rather than introduce new ones to our bodies. Hospitals that are already under a massive strain to deal with the cases of COVID-19, especially in less developed countries that already struggle with healthcare infrastructure, do not have the resources to deal with additional disease from contaminated Water.
Therefore, at Water& a founding principal of ours is advocating for clean Water for all. This entails partnering with organizations to promote clean Water advocacy initiatives and endorsing clean Water and Water sanitation bills. Water& also aims to educate the public about Water quality and the harmful contaminants that remain in untested Water so that people may get their own resources to test their Water.
“Goal 6 | Department of Economic and Social Affairs.” United Nations, United Nations, sdgs.un.org/goals/goal6.
“Study Says Carcinogens in Drinking Water Linked to Thousands of Cancers.” Cancer Treatment Centers of America, 11 June 2021, www.cancercenter.com/community/blog/2020/05/drinking-water-cancer-risk#:~:text=A recent study by the,get water whenever they need.