Today is Blog Action Day and this year's topic is water. It's hard to think of a subject that is more crucial to life. Yet, as organizers note, almost a billion people on the planet lack access to clean, safe drinking water. That’s one in every eight people.
"Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of diseases and kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. Children are especially vulnerable, as their bodies aren't strong enough to fight diarrhea, dysentery and other illnesses. The UN predicts that one tenth of the global disease burden can be prevented simply by improving water supply and sanitation."
Furhermore, according to the United States Fund of UNICEF, about 4,500 children worldwide die each day from unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation facilities. Over 90% of deaths from diarrhea caused by unsafe water and sanitation occur in chidlren under 5 years of age. "The poor are especially hard hit. An infant born in sub-Saharan Africa is 520 times more likely to die from disease than a child born in Europe or the United States."
What can you do? An easy first step is to support the UN's work to supply clean, safe drinking water to the world's poorest populations by signing this petition.