Billions of people lack access to safe drinking water and sanitation services. The failure of the international aid community, nations, and local organizations to satisfy these basic human needs has led to substantial, unnecessary, and preventable human suffering. This article explores the human right to water in international law and the implications of this right within a resource-constrained world.
There is broad recognition that adapting to climate change, coupled with the need to address aging infrastructure, population growth, and degraded ecosystems, will require rethinking programs and policies and investing in our natural and built water systems.
“While considerable progress has been made over the past decade across all areas of development, the pace of progress observed in previous years is insufficient to fully meet the Sustainable Development Goals and targets by 2030.” -United Nations, 2017
No one need explain the true value of water to 54-year-old Elizabeth and her family in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. She spends more than half her meagre salary on buying drinking water from a local water vendor, as she knows the water from the nearby lake could make her unwell, unproductive and unable to provide for her family.
This report recognizes the need for successful corporate water stewardship to encompass sustainable access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) for workers in company supply chains, and offers steps for companies to take to help end the global water and sanitation crisis.