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VOA News Examines Water Conditions In Asian-Pacific Region

VOA News examines how growing populations and industrialization are contributing to deteriorating water conditions in the Asian-Pacific region – ranked second lowest in the world for the availability of water, according to a recent U.N. report. “United Nations water resource experts say with a population of four billion people, the Asia-Pacific region faces the risk of conflicts over water as communities struggle to meet their needs” due to a decrease in the amount and quality of water, according to the news service.

The water issues in the Asian-Pacific have received “new attention this year” after a drought in Southeast Asia and southern China has led “water levels in major rivers and lakes” to dip “to the lowest point in more than 50 years in some areas,” according to VOA News. Despite recent efforts by governments to meet the Millennium Development Goals on water access by 2015, VOA News writes “more than 600,000 people in the region still do not have safe drinking water.”

The article examines how water supplies affect human and environmental health and contribute to conflicts between communities. According to VOA News, the U.N. report “warns water supplies could deteriorate in many countries, particularly some of the region’s poorest. The Maldives, India, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan, Afghanistan and the Philippines all face shortages because of declining supplies, poor quality or rising populations” (Corben, 3/31).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.