The United Nations 2023 Water Conference

  • 27 Mar 2023

On March 22, 2023, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced during an official side event at the United Nations 2023 Water Conference in New York City that two billion people globally rely on water sources contaminated with faecal matter.

  • The WHO called for universal access to drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene to improve global health on World Water Day at the United Nations 2023 Water Conference in New York City.
  • Almost half of the global population lacks safely managed sanitation services and 29% lack a handwashing facility with soap and water at home.
  • These conditions result in over 700 children under five dying every day from diarrhoea linked to unsafe water, sanitation, and poor hygiene.
  • A four-fold increase in the current rate of progress is required to achieve universal coverage by 2030, according to the WHO.
  • Achieving these targets would help save 829,000 lives annually, which is the current number of people that die from diseases related to unsafe water, inadequate sanitation, and poor hygiene practices.
  • The WHO reported these statistics at an official side event attended by representatives from India, Ethiopia, France, UNICEF, World Bank, WaterAid, and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
  • The event sought to explore how WASH (Water, sanitation and hygiene) and the health sectors could work together to improve health and achieve shared aims.