“That 2.6 billion people live each day without a proper toilet is shocking,” Willem-Alexander, the Prince of Orange who is also chair of the U.N. Secretary-General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation, writes in an opinion piece in the Hurriyet Daily News, which marks the launch of a U.N. effort to build political will for sanitation.
Water and Sanitation
Significant progress is being made toward reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by the 2015 deadline, but the poorest countries are not progressing as quickly and more must be done to improve health and development outcomes in those nations, according to this year’s MDG report (.pdf), VOA News reports. “Despite the global economic downturn and the food and energy crises, we are on track to meet the MDG targets for poverty-reduction,” U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said at the launch of the report on Thursday in Geneva (Schlein, 7/7).
USAID and the National Science Foundation (NSF) on Thursday launched the Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) initiative to “provide grants to developing world partners of NSF U.S. grantees,” with the goal of supporting “applied research â€“ science in support of development â€“ in areas of global concern such as climate change, biodiversity, water issues, agriculture, seismic hazards and deforestation,” SciDev.Net reports (Tatalovic, 7/8).
UNICEF last week said it “faces a shortfall of more than $50 million to meet the continuing critical needs” of children in Pakistan, one year after monsoon floods submerged nearly one-fifth of the country, the U.N. News Centre reports (7/29).
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon “triggered a political controversy last week when he implicitly declared that even human rights have a market price,” Inter Press Service reports, noting Ban “admitted it is not acceptable that poor slum-dwellers pay five or even 10 times as much for their water as wealthy residents of the same cities.”
“The number of cholera fatalities in Haiti has risen to just short of 6,000, the health ministry said Sunday,” Deutsche Presse-Agentur/M&C reports. “By 31 July, 5,968 had died with 10 more people succumbing every day, the ministry said,” and “[m]ore than 420,000 people have been infected since the outbreak started in October and another 600 cases are registered daily,” the news agency notes.
The U.N. marked World Habitat Day Monday with a call for governments worldwide to do more to reduce urban poverty and improve the living conditions populations in cities around the world face, Kenya Broadcasting Corporation reports. “Creating better cities demands the combined efforts of national and local governments, civil society and the private sector, supported by the best efforts of the United Nations system,” U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement released to mark World Habitat Day.
“…The adverse impact of dirty water and poor hygiene and sanitation reaches far beyond health. The diseases that stem from a lack of WASH keep children out of school and prevent parents from working, thereby decreasing human capital, worker productivity and gross domestic product. However, by addressing these diseases together…
Founder and Executive Director of WASH United, Thorsten Kiefer, describes the popularity of cricket in South Asia, and the opportunity it creates for a WASH media campaign. “As part of our partnership with ICC (the International Cricket Council), key matches of the tournament will be dedicated to promoting sanitation and…
In a press release observing World Water Day, which takes place every year on March 22, UNICEF notes, “The MDG target for drinking water was met and passed in 2010, when 89 per cent of the global population had access to improved sources of drinking water — such as piped…