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Water and Sanitation

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World Water Week To Bring Water Efficiency Into Spotlight

The Guardian: ‘Water efficiency should be our goal,’ says head of World Water Week “[Head of the Stockholm International Water Institute and World Water Week] Torgny Holmgren explains why the 2014 [World Water Week] theme is energy and water and what impact he hopes this year’s conference will have…” (Young,…

Changing Attitudes Critical To Solving India’s Sanitation Problem

New York Times: India’s Sanitation Needs Editorial Board “India may finally be on the verge of making progress on eradicating one of its most intractable problems: open defecation because of a lack of toilets. Prime Minister Narendra Modi deserves credit for focusing on the scourge. But it will take more…

Research Can Help Improve Water, Food Security

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists”: How Research Can Banish Water and Food Scarcity Frank Rijsberman, CEO of the CGIAR Consortium, discusses the consortium’s “research into water scarcity, livelihoods, and food security” (9/5).

Cholera Outbreak Hits Kenya’s Largest Refugee Camp

“Cholera has broken out in the world’s largest refugee camp in Kenya, home to nearly 500,000 Somali refugees, the United Nations said on Tuesday,” Reuters reports (Nebehay, 11/15). “There are now 60 cases of cholera in [Kenya’s Dadaab complex], including 10 laboratory-confirmed cases and one refugee death, according to Andrej Mahecic, a spokesperson for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR),” the U.N. News Centre writes.

Innovations, New Solutions Needed To End ‘Global Sanitation Crisis’

In this CNN opinion piece, Jenna Davis — a faculty member in Stanford University’s Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, where her research and teaching focuses on water, sanitation and health, and a former member of the U.N. Millennium Task Force for Water and Sanitation — reports on what she calls a “global sanitation crisis,” writing, “More than 40 percent of the world’s population does not have access to a toilet. These 2.6 billion people, most living in low- and middle-income countries in Asia and Africa, face the daily challenge of finding a bush, train track or empty lot where they can urinate and defecate in relative privacy.”

Balanced Approach Needed To Fight Cholera Outbreaks In Haiti

Jason Nickerson, a respiratory therapist and doctoral candidate in Population Health at the University of Ottawa, in this Global Health Hub post, recounts recent controversy surrounding “the health and humanitarian response to the earthquake and cholera outbreaks” in Haiti, noting tension “between the provision of [a cholera] vaccine as opposed to spending…

Congo’s Cholera Outbreak Spreads To Crowded Capital City

Three cases of cholera have been confirmed in the Democratic Republic of Congo capital of Kinshasa, “home to at least 9 million people, many of whom live in cramped, unsanitary conditions,” Reuters reports.

Ten Global Public Health Achievements

In its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the CDC describes “global public health achievements … that occurred outside of the United States during 2001-2010.” Gains in public health efforts, such as preventing child mortality, malaria, and neglected tropical diseases, have improved longevity and “resulted from improved living conditions overall, advances in medical science, and a number of population-level interventions. However, major disparities persist. During the past decade, in low-income countries, average life expectancy at birth increased from 55 to 57 years (3.6%), while increasing from 78 to 80 years (2.6%) in high-income countries,” the article notes (6/24).