Try to imagine our lives without water: we could not drink, eat or wash ourselves. There would be no plants and animals, no rain, no seas, rivers, lakes… In short, without water, life on Earth would not exist. This is why the United Nations has decided to hold World Water Day, every year on 22 March. It is a day instituted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1992, following the Rio Conference, to commemorate the importance of this resource that is so essentilal for life. The theme chosen for World Water Day 2021 is “Valuing Water”: water is of immense value, far greater than the price we pay to use it. Water is of enormous value to humans; it is linked to food, culture, health, education, the economy and the integrity of the natural environment. If we neglect any of these values, we risk mismanaging this finite and irreplaceable resource.
2010, the UN recognised access to clean and safe drinking water and sanitation as a human right essential for the full enjoyment of life. The human right to water entitles everyone, without discrimination, to sufficient, safe, clean and physically accessible water for personal and domestic uses, including drinking water, washing of clothes, food preparation and personal and domestic hygiene. Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG 6) is precisely to “Ensure access to water and sanitation for all”: accessible, clean water is an essential aspect of the world we want to live in. Our planet has enough clean water to achieve this goal, but due to poor infrastructures or economic mismanagement, millions of people, most of them children, die every year from diseases caused by inadequate water supply, sanitation and hygiene levels.
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