World Water Day 2017 : What It’s All About, Wastewater (2017 Theme), and Facts

world water day 2017 wastewater

World Water Day – March 22nd

World Water Day (WWD) – March 22nd each year- is about taking actions to combat the water crisis. This year’s theme is wastewater. An astounding 1.8 billion people use a supply of drinking water contaminated with faeces. This poses huge risks for contracting cholera, dysentery, typhoid fever, and polio.

The Sustainable Development Goals, established in 2015, add a goal to ensure everybody has access to safe water by 2030. Solving the water crisis a vital part in the struggle to eradicate extreme poverty. World Water Day was first designated by the UN General Assembly on March 22nd 1993 which means this is the 25th year World Water Day has been celebrated! WWD is coordinated by UN Water in cooperation with partners and authorities.

Wastewater (World Water Day 2017’s Theme)

Why did UN Water decide on “wastewater” for this years theme? Worldwide, most of the wastewater from our cities, houses, business and agriculture flows back to nature without being reused or treated. This pollutes the environment, and precious nutrients and other unrecoverable materials are lost. Rather than wasting wastewater, it’s vital we reduce and reuse waste water. At home we should and are able to reuse greywater in our gardens and for plants. In our cities, we should and are able to reuse of waste water for green spaces. In agriculture and business, we should and are able to recycle it for irrigation and cooling systems. The options are endless.

It’s possible to make the water cycle work better for every living thing on this planet; we simply must! It’s very realistic to reach Sustainable Development Target 6’s goal to halving the percentage of untreated waste water, and increase water recycling and reuse.

Facts about World Water Day and Wastewater

  • Worldwide, over 80% of the wastewater created by society flows back to the environment without being treated or reused.
  • Hygiene, unsafe water, and poor sanitation cause around 842,000 death yearly.
  • 663 million individuals lack healthful drinking water sources.
  • By 2050, close to 70% of the population in the world’s will live in towns (50% live in towns today). Unfortunately, most cities in developing nations don’t have the resources and sufficient infrastructure to address wastewater management in an effective and sustainable manner. This must be addressed!
  • Using waste water as a resource is endless. Safely handled waste water is a sustainable and affordable supply of water, energy, and nutrients.
  • Although some argue the costs to recycle waste water are too much to be worthwhile, this is false! Any costs are drastically outweighed by the advantages to environmental sustainability, economic development and human well-being! Recycling and reusing waste water creates more green jobs and supplies new business opportunities.