This month, the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) released the Progress on Sanitation and Drinking-Water: 2013 Update, an in-depth analysis of trends in global access to safe drinking water and improved sanitation.
According to JMP’s findings, almost 1.9 billion people have gained access to an improved sanitation facility since 1990, yet fifteen percent of the world population was still practicing open defecation in 2011.
The report calls for a bigger push to meet the 2015 Millennial Development Goal (MDG) to halve the proportion of the 1990 population without access to improved sanitation. “There is an urgent need to ensure all the necessary pieces are in place — political commitment, funding, leadership — so the world can accelerate progress and reach the Millennium Development Goal sanitation target,” stated Dr. Maria Neira, WHO director for public health and environment.
The report additionally emphasizes ending open defecation by 2025. Findings highlight the success of piped drinking water in improving water access, and assess the connection between intermittent service and increased water contamination.
Post-2015 targets and indicators include universal hand-washing facilities in the home by 2030.
Read the report and additional key findings. Then, tell us what you think in the comments below.