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Over 3bn people face inadequate access to water globally, says UN

Over 3bn people face inadequate access to water globally, says UN
November 30
08:27 2022

The United Nations (UN) says about 3.6 billion people across the world are confronted with inadequate access to water at least once a month every year.

The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) said this in its 2021 state of global water resources report published on Tuesday.

The report is designed to support the monitoring and management of global resources when there are increased demands and limited supplies.

It also examined the impact of climate and environmental change on earth’s water resources and projected that more than five billion people will encounter insufficient access to water by 2050.

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The report said large areas of the globe recorded drier than the normal condition witnessed in 2021 due to the effect of climate change and a La Nina event (cooling of ocean surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific).

According to the report, compared with the 30-year hydrological average, the area with below-average stream flow last year was approximately two times larger than the above-average area.

It said the UN water agency reported that between 2001 and 2018, 74 percent of all-natural disasters were caused by water.

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Meanwhile, Petteri Taalas, WMO secretary-general, said there is still an inadequate understanding of changes in the distribution, quantity and quality of freshwater resources.

He said the situation is still affecting the world despite the regular impact of climate change experienced through intense and frequent droughts, extreme flooding, erratic seasonal rainfall and accelerated melting of glaciers.

He added that the report will close the awareness gap and help to provide universal access to early warnings of natural disasters in the next five years.

Nigeria experienced the devastating impact of flooding which swept away many vulnerable communities and affected about 1.4 million people in 2022.

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