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Water pollution and lack of drinking water access

The vast majority of our water is in our oceans, with just 2.5% of the planet’s total supply being fresh water.

Definition of water pollution: Water pollution is the contamination of natural water bodies by chemical, physical, radioactive or pathogenic microbial substances.


Few facts about water pollution and lack of drinking water access:


  • Every year, an estimated 2.2 billion tons of waste is dumped in our oceans. Plastic is the major constituent.
  • Two million tons of human waste is disposed in water everyday.
  • The run off from crops into our oceans has a negative effect upon phytoplankton which is responsible for the production of the most of the oxygen in our air.
  • At least 10 percent of the world’s population is thought to consume food irrigated by waste water.
  • A direct effect of excessive CO2 production: The oceans absorb as much as 25% of all CO2 emissions. The gas then combines with other elements to form compounds such as carbonic acid. Over the last 250 years, surface acidity of the ocean has increased by an estimated 30%. The acidity is expected to increase by 150% by 2100.
  • Around 70% of the industrial waste is dumped into the water bodies where they pollute the usable water supply.
  • 80%  of the water pollution is caused due to domestic sewage like throwing garbage on open ground and water bodies.


Some global facts about the consequences of water pollution and lack of drinking water access:


  • 5000 people a day die because of dirty drinking water
  • 1 billion people have no access to safe drinking water
  • According to the WHO (World Health Organization) and United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), around 2.5 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation.
  • Adverse alteration of water quality presently produces large scale illness and deaths, accounting for approximately 50 million deaths per year worldwide.
  • According to the survey done by Food & Water Watch cites that approximately 3.5 billion people in 2025 will face water shortage issues. This will be mainly due to water pollution.
  • The waste produced in the river contains bacteria, parasites and viruses. These cause life- threatening diseases like diarrhoea, cholera and typhoid.