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Global access to safe water: accounting for water quality and the resulting impact on MDG progress.

Onda K, LoBuglio J, Bartram J - Int J Environ Res Public Health (2012)

Bottom Line: Monitoring of progress towards the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) drinking water target relies on classification of water sources as "improved" or "unimproved" as an indicator for water safety.We estimate that an additional 1.2 billion (18%) use water from sources or systems with significant sanitary risks.While our estimate is imprecise, the magnitude of the estimate and the health and development implications suggest that greater attention is needed to better understand and manage drinking water safety.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: The Water Institute, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 135 Dauer Drive, CB #7431, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA. konda@live.unc.edu

ABSTRACT
Monitoring of progress towards the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) drinking water target relies on classification of water sources as "improved" or "unimproved" as an indicator for water safety. We adjust the current Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) estimate by accounting for microbial water quality and sanitary risk using the only-nationally representative water quality data currently available, that from the WHO and UNICEF "Rapid Assessment of Drinking Water Quality". A principal components analysis (PCA) of national environmental and development indicators was used to create models that predicted, for most countries, the proportions of piped and of other-improved water supplies that are faecally contaminated; and of these sources, the proportions that lack basic sanitary protection against contamination. We estimate that 1.8 billion people (28% of the global population) used unsafe water in 2010. The 2010 JMP estimate is that 783 million people (11%) use unimproved sources. Our estimates revise the 1990 baseline from 23% to 37%, and the target from 12% to 18%, resulting in a shortfall of 10% of the global population towards the MDG target in 2010. In contrast, using the indicator "use of an improved source" suggests that the MDG target for drinking-water has already been achieved. We estimate that an additional 1.2 billion (18%) use water from sources or systems with significant sanitary risks. While our estimate is imprecise, the magnitude of the estimate and the health and development implications suggest that greater attention is needed to better understand and manage drinking water safety.

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World population by water contamination status and sanitary risk for 2010 (billions).
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ijerph-09-00880-f001: World population by water contamination status and sanitary risk for 2010 (billions).

Mentions: The full categorization of the world population of piped and other-improved water source users into categories based on faecal contamination and sanitary risk using our estimation methods is shown in Figure 1, where upper and lower bounds are shown in parentheses where available. The world’s population is divided into those using improved sources, unimproved sources, and sources of unknown type. The improved source population is divided into those using piped and other-improved sources. Each of these two populations is divided into those using sources that are safe, unsafe, or unestimated safety. The populations using safe piped and safe other-improved sources are divided into those using sources with low and elevated levels of sanitary risks.


Global access to safe water: accounting for water quality and the resulting impact on MDG progress.

Onda K, LoBuglio J, Bartram J - Int J Environ Res Public Health (2012)

World population by water contamination status and sanitary risk for 2010 (billions).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3367284&req=5

ijerph-09-00880-f001: World population by water contamination status and sanitary risk for 2010 (billions).
Mentions: The full categorization of the world population of piped and other-improved water source users into categories based on faecal contamination and sanitary risk using our estimation methods is shown in Figure 1, where upper and lower bounds are shown in parentheses where available. The world’s population is divided into those using improved sources, unimproved sources, and sources of unknown type. The improved source population is divided into those using piped and other-improved sources. Each of these two populations is divided into those using sources that are safe, unsafe, or unestimated safety. The populations using safe piped and safe other-improved sources are divided into those using sources with low and elevated levels of sanitary risks.

Bottom Line: Monitoring of progress towards the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) drinking water target relies on classification of water sources as "improved" or "unimproved" as an indicator for water safety.We estimate that an additional 1.2 billion (18%) use water from sources or systems with significant sanitary risks.While our estimate is imprecise, the magnitude of the estimate and the health and development implications suggest that greater attention is needed to better understand and manage drinking water safety.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: The Water Institute, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 135 Dauer Drive, CB #7431, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA. konda@live.unc.edu

ABSTRACT
Monitoring of progress towards the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) drinking water target relies on classification of water sources as "improved" or "unimproved" as an indicator for water safety. We adjust the current Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) estimate by accounting for microbial water quality and sanitary risk using the only-nationally representative water quality data currently available, that from the WHO and UNICEF "Rapid Assessment of Drinking Water Quality". A principal components analysis (PCA) of national environmental and development indicators was used to create models that predicted, for most countries, the proportions of piped and of other-improved water supplies that are faecally contaminated; and of these sources, the proportions that lack basic sanitary protection against contamination. We estimate that 1.8 billion people (28% of the global population) used unsafe water in 2010. The 2010 JMP estimate is that 783 million people (11%) use unimproved sources. Our estimates revise the 1990 baseline from 23% to 37%, and the target from 12% to 18%, resulting in a shortfall of 10% of the global population towards the MDG target in 2010. In contrast, using the indicator "use of an improved source" suggests that the MDG target for drinking-water has already been achieved. We estimate that an additional 1.2 billion (18%) use water from sources or systems with significant sanitary risks. While our estimate is imprecise, the magnitude of the estimate and the health and development implications suggest that greater attention is needed to better understand and manage drinking water safety.

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