A report from the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund says the world is on track to meet or even exceed the drinking-water target of the Millennium Development Goals, which aims to cut in half the number of people who do not have access to good water.
87 percent of the world’s population or approximately 5.9 billion people are using safe drinking-water sources, according to the new WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program report, “Progress on Sanitation and Drinking – 2010 Update,” released yesterday.
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There is some good news in the sanitation area too, which still needs much improvement. The unsanitary practice of open defecation is on the decline for the population worldwide, with a global decrease from 25 percent in 1990 to 17 percent in 2008, representing a decrease of 168 million people openly defecating.
This report provides the clearest picture to date of the current use of improved sanitation facilities and improved sources of drinking water throughout the world. The report is aimed to be used by policy-makers, donors, governmental and nongovernmental agencies to decide what needs to be done and where to focus their efforts to achieve these goals.
(From Voice of America and WHO)