Supplying Clean Water Globally
Challenge and Problem
Water is one of the Earth's most precious natural resources. Most of it is saltwater. Fresh usable water is only 3% of the world’s supply and two-thirds of that is frozen in glaciers, ice caps and icebergs. The remaining 1% is available for human consumption.
Today 1.1 billion people don’t have access to safe water and 2.4 billion lack sanitation facilities. 80% of developing world diseases are water-borne with an estimate of 3.4 million deaths, mostly children, in 1998 of water-related diseases.
Demand for fresh water is increasing. Agriculture currently uses 70% of the world’s water supply. To feed 2 billion more by the year 2030 there will be a 60% increase in demand on the water supply. Considering the current rates of consumption, population and development, some two-thirds of the world population will be affected by droughts by the year 2050.
Nanotechnology will provide part of the solution for this challenge through inexpensive decentralized water purification, detection on the molecular level of contaminants, and greatly improved filtration systems.
Recent news pertaining to Foresight Nanotechnology Challenge #2 — Supplying Clean Water Globally:
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