Water is a human need that we simply cannot live without. Each person needs at least 20 to 50 litres of fresh clean water per day for drinking, cooking and keeping themselves clean.
Polluted water isn’t only dirty but it’s also deadly. Millions of people die every year from diseases like cholera. And tens of millions more people are made ill by an array of water-related illnesses, many of which are quite easily preventable.
The United Nations have deemed access to clean water, a basic human right and it is the first step to improving the quality of life for everyone on earth. Communities that are water-poor are also economically poor and their residents are caught in an ongoing cycle of poverty.
Education also suffers when sick children miss class. Economic opportunities are lost due to the impacts of illnesses and the time-consuming process of collecting clean water. It is mainly children and women who bear the worst of this burden.
Water is essential for you to hydrate and for food production but keeping yourself clean is just as important. Keeping the surfaces in your home clean and germ free is also crucial. A lack of proper sanitation will breed diseases and rob people of their dignity.
The state of the supply of drinking water can be characterised by: quality, cost and reliability.
Organisations such as the World Health Organisation have strict water quality standards that will specify the microbial, radiological and chemical characteristics of safe drinking water.
All kinds of waste, whether its human, animal, agricultural run-off, industrial chemicals, etc, leave water unsafe to drink and it can cause water related diseases. Water sources need to be protected against any form of contamination. If a major water source is contaminated it, the results will be disastrous.
Contamination can occur at the water source, both at the surface and in the ground. Once the water is already in the distribution system, there are more ways that the water can become contaminated. Pipes need to be properly protected so as not to contaminate any of the water flowing through them. Improper storage of water can also result in unsafe drinking water.
Water sources will often vary and they be unreliable at times. The amount of water at the source will also be influenced by season, climate and location. People in water scarce areas need to consider exploiting rain water more than they are now.
Talisa Water are aiming to ensure that every South African has access to all the fresh drinking water they need, every day.