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water facts

factsDid you know it takes more than 2,900 gallons of water to produce a quarter-pound hamburger? Or that the average American uses 100 to 175 gallons of water at home each day when an African family uses about 5 gallons of water each day?

Check out these 10 important facts

884 million people about one in eight worldwide - lack access to safe drinking water (1)

Every $1 spent on water and sanitation creates on average another $8 in costs averted and productivity gained. (1)

Every 15 seconds, a child dies from a water-related disease. (1)

For children under age five, water-related diseases are the leading cause of death. (2)

88 percent of all diseases are caused by unsafe drinking water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene. (3)

At any given time, half of the world's hospital beds are occupied by patients suffering from a water-related disease. (1)

40 billion hours each year are spent collecting water in sub-Saharan Africa, equal to over 19 million full-time employees. (4)

Nearly 3.6 million people die each year from a water-related disease. (5)

The weight of the water container that women in Africa carry on their heads is equivalent to the baggage weight allowed by airlines (20 kg/44 lbs). (6)

Many women and young girls in developing countries must walk as much as six miles everyday to retrieve water for their families. (7)



(1) UNICEF/WHO. 2008.Progress on Drinking Water and Sanitation: Special Focus on Sanitation
(2) World Health Organization. World Health Report 2003.
(3) World Bank, All About: Water and Health, CNN, December 18, 2007
(4) WaterAid
(5) World Health Organization. 2008.Safer Water, Better Health: Costs, benefits, and sustainability of interventions to protect and promote health
(6) Women and Water Privatization 2003, Women's Health Rights Net
(7) Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council


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