UN Chief: "Bad Water More Deadly Than War"

"UNITED NATIONS -- Bad water kills more people than wars or earthquakes, declares Anders Berntell, executive director of the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI).

The devastating earthquake in Haiti last January claimed the lives of more than 200,000 people, making it one of the biggest single natural disasters this year.

But in contrast, some 3.6 million people -- including 1.5 million children -- are estimated to die each year from water-related diseases, including diarrhoea, typhoid, cholera and dysentery.

As the United Nations commemorates World Water Day next week, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says clean water has become scarce and will become even scarcer with the onset of climate change.

'More people die from unsafe water than all forms of violence, including war,' he said in a statement released Thursday."

Thalif Deen reports for Inter Press Service March 18, 2010.

Source: IPS, 03/19/2010