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Everything about the Sustainable Development Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation

Credit : Kannagi Khanna

Did you know that 2.2 billion people globally do not have access to safe water at home?1 Considering that one of the most effective ways to stop the spread of COVID-19 and other pathogens is proper hand washing with soap and water, this number is alarming.

What are the Global Goals for Sustainable Development?

In 2015, world leaders agreed to 17 Global Goals (officially known as the Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs) aiming to create a better world by 2030 by ending poverty, fighting inequality, and addressing the urgency of climate change. 

The 17 Global Goals are:
(1) No Poverty, (2) Zero Hunger, (3) Good Health and Well-being, (4) Quality Education, (5) Gender Equality, (6) Clean Water and Sanitation, (7) Affordable and Clean Energy, (8) Decent Work and Economic Growth, (9) Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, (10) Reduced Inequality, (11) Sustainable Cities and Communities, (12) Responsible Consumption and Production, (13) Climate Action, (14) Life Below Water, (15) Life On Land, (16) Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions, (17) Partnerships for the Goals.

What is the Sustainable Development Goal 6?

The 6th goal of sustainable development is to ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all. More specifically, 8 targets need to be attained by 2030:

  1. Achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all.
  2. 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. 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. 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. Implement integrated water resources management at all levels, including through transboundary cooperation as appropriate.
  6. Protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers, and lakes.
  7. Expand international cooperation and capacity-building support to developing countries in water- and sanitation-related activities and programs, 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.

Goals and targets taken from the Global Goals official website.

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How is the One Drop Foundation participating?

The Foundation focuses on many of the SDGs, but mainly on the 6th goal, since our mission is to ensure sustainable access to safe water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) for the most vulnerable communities through innovative partnerships, creativity, and the power of art.

At One Drop, we are always ready to go above and beyond to achieve true long-term sustainability. We believe in the combined power of providing access to safe WASH services, promoting healthy behaviours, and encouraging capital to support income-generating activities and market-based solutions.

Access; Behaviour change; Capital. These elements make up our A•B•C for Sustainability™ model. The combined power of these three components makes our projects sustainable by creating an enabling environment for positive change and helping communities reach their full potential.

To learn more about our impact, read our 2019 Impact Report.

Reference: 1.World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF. Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) 2017.

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