Water Pollution Problems in Africa and India

Essay by xxGothicNerdxxJunior High, 9th grade May 2008

download word file, 6 pages 4.3

Gathering water for African villages is a job placed on the women. They spend countless hours carrying water from distant sources. These sources are often polluted and this continuous effort is an enormous waste of time that could be better used for childcare and education (Wanja). According to J.W.N. Riviere in a publication called "Threats to the Worlds Waters", women and girls in Africa spend 40 billion person hours a year hauling polluted water. Both natural and man-made pollutants have damaged water quality in Africa and India, which has adversely affected the population's health and wasted time.

The poorest coverage for water supply and sanitation is in Africa. It is estimated that the current investment is 1.3 billion dollars per year. This amount of coverage is completely inadequate for this continents needs (Wanja). It is estimated by a report called "Year 2000 Progress Report" from the World Health Organization that the funds necessary on a yearly basis for water supply and sanitation is 2.2

billion dollars. This report also stated that over half of the population of Africa currently lacks safe drinking water. It also says that two thirds of the population doesn't have a sanitary means of human waste disposal.

In Africa, polluted water, water shortages, poor water management, and improper waste disposal all cause major public health problems. According to David Mhango from the University of Malawi, the current level of water resources has partly been due to the rapid population growth and urbanization, along with meteorological and hydrological droughts and rainfall variability, wastage and mismanagement, water supply system problems (inadequate design criteria, leakages, poor maintenance, insufficient boreholes and wells, deforestation, improper cultivation practices and uncontrolled bush fires.

The deterioration of water quality is caused by the high sediment in the rivers. Other problems include highly mineralized and...