SDGs Goal 6: Clean Water & Sanitation

“Clean, accessible water for all is an essential part of the world we want to live in. There is sufficient fresh water on the planet to achieve this. But due to bad economics or poor infrastructure, every year millions of people, most of them children, die from diseases associated with inadequate water supply, sanitation and hygiene.” United Nations

Water is a vital part of every day human life and it is a basic human right that every person have access to water on a daily basis.  However, access to any old water is not good enough-to improve health and quality of life this water has to be clean. Billions of people across the world are drinking dirty, unsanitised water each day in an effort to keep themselves alive. However, dirty water carries diseases and illness and can cause more harm than good in most cases.

  • 1.8 billion people only have access to water that has been contaminated by excrement.
  • Almost 1000 children a day die from preventable diseases that come from the unsanitised water they are drinking.


  • 40% of the global population is living in areas of water scarcity and this figure is on the rise.
  • 1.7 billion people live in areas where the amount of water used exceeds the countries ability to replenish this water usage.  This means that people are forced to drink from puddles, dirty ponds and any other merge Water source they can find.  Many people (including children) walk for miles in search of water.  This can lead to children being exposed to other dangers due distances travelled from home.  It can also lead to exploitation of the poorly to water being sold at excessively high rates-sometimes as much as a days wages.

Issues of sanitation are also incredibly problematic as 2.4 billion people still do not have access to toilets.  Lack of access to these facilities means the continual contaminatiom of water sources and the continued cycle of polluted water spreading disease.  For improvements to water sources to be effective latrines need to made accessible to all.

The need for Goal 6 to reach its targets also has an important impact on Goal 3: Good Health and Well Being, as clean water and sanitation has such a big impact on human health.


1. By 2030, achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all
2. By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations
3. By 2030, improve water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials, halving the proportion of untreated wastewater and substantially increasing recycling and safe reuse globally
4. By 2030, substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity
5. By 2030, implement integrated water resources management at all levels, including through transboundary cooperation as appropriate
6. By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes
7. By 2030, expand international cooperation and capacity-building support to developing countries in water- and sanitation-related activities and programmes, including water harvesting, desalination, water efficiency, wastewater treatment, recycling and reuse technologies
8. Support and strengthen the participation of local communities in improving water and sanitation management

(Information from UN Org)

There is lots more information at and


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