On the occasion of World Water Day, the European Union recalls that safe drinking water and sanitation are crucial for a healthy and dignified life. And yet, over 750 million people worldwide are still without access to safe drinking water, thus deprived of a basic human right. It is a human tragedy and totally unacceptable that over 4,000 children under five die every day from diseases associated with the lack of access to clean drinking water as well as inadequate sanitation and hygiene.
In 2015, the world has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to agree on a truly transformational and comprehensive approach to poverty eradication and sustainable development worldwide. The EU believes that a rights-based approach to the post-2015 agenda, encompassing all human rights, and gender equality, would best ensure that these objectives are met.
The EU is concerned about the problem of water scarcity and water stress, which is increasingly due to climate change and likely to affect more people in the future due to demographic developments. Water shortages, poor water quality, drought or floods are factors contributing to violent conflict which in turn deprive many people from access to water.