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Water for the World, from Congress

Water for the World, from Congress

Water. It’s something I take for granted in my daily life, from my shower every morning to my ever-present bottle that I drink and refill throughout the day. But it’s not something that the 844 million people do not have access to clean water can take for granted. That’s why I’m so excited to support the Water for the World Act.

A full 2.5 billion people don’t have access to adequate sanitation. And that lack of sanitation means disease is spread rapidly; for example, 4,100 children die each day from severe diarrhea — preventable if they had the ability to practice proper hygiene.

Hardest hit are the women and girls in these impoverished villages. In developing countries, they walk an average of 3.5 miles every day to collect water for their families. And that’s time the girls are not spending in school. Studies show that if water is available within a 15 minute walk instead of a one hour walk, girls are 12 percent more likely to go to school.

With global warming, industrialization and our booming world population, the water crisis is only going to get worse. But fortunately, we already have the tools to make it better.

The Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act of 2005 provided more than 2 million people with improved access to drinking water last year. The act, named after the late Paul Simon, who warned of a looming water crisis in his book Tapped Out 10 years ago, also improved sanitation for more than 1.5 million people. It’s time to broaden it.

Senators Durbin and Corker recently introduced S. 624, The Senator Paul Simon Water for the World Act of 2009, a bipartisan bill to make clean water a reality for 100 million people by 2015.

A press release on Senator Durbin’s website sets out just how it would achieve this goal:

  • “Target underdeveloped countries with focused initiatives to improve access to clean water and sanitation;
  • Foster global cooperation on research and technology development, including regional partnerships among experts on clean water;
  • Provide technical assistance and capacity-building to develop expertise within countries facing water and sanitation challenges;
  • Provide seed money for the deployment of clean water and sanitation technologies; and
  • Strengthen the human infrastructure at USAID and the State Department to implement clean water and sanitation programs effectively and to ensure that water receives priority attention in our foreign policy efforts.”

But with only five cosponsors, the bill isn’t getting the attention it needs for a hearing and further action by Senate leaders. It must have at least 20 cosponsors to move forward.

We can truly make a difference for the millions of people who lack access to water around the world. And you can contribute to the solution simply by sending a letter to your Senator, urging him or her to cosponsor the bill so it can gain traction in the Senate.

It’ll take you less time than refilling your water bottle with the clean water we take for granted. Will you sign?

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6:05AM PDT on Jul 2, 2009
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3:35PM PDT on Jun 19, 2009

You all have got to come to Floyd county, Kentucky and try some water--lemme know how ill you feel after The feds ain't gonna save us from bad water. Only every person is gonna do that! And, tell it to someone who get's wealthy from polluting...what a joke.

6:33AM PDT on Jun 19, 2009

Water for everyone! Yes !!! CLEAN TOO !!!!

Just want you to know : The taps in some Fort Edward ,N.Y. homes had PCB's in them.

Then in some S.Glens Falls, N.Y. had PCB's on the land. (encapsulated) Williamm. St.

The land in some queensbury areas have Pcb's
(encapsulated). Luzerne Rd.

Fort Edward/ PCB's Millions of pounds of PCB's in the Hudson, on the land, In the PIPES. all E.River Rd., FORT EDWARD N.Y. / NOT EVEN SHOWN ON GOOGLE MAPS. THEY HAVE IT COMPLETELY OFF. NOW COULD IT BECAUSE THEY ARE DREDGING? MAYBE FOR SALE SIGNS. ALL THE AREA IS MONITORED BY THE EPA .There are landfills around the whole area.


8:05AM PDT on Jun 14, 2009

Can anyone imagine how pure was the water many years ago

before the industry era rush through life history ,

truly manifactured things by man has made huge impact in our

lives,also it took nature's charm from underneath

us to leave our world so needy and ugly.

9:02AM PDT on Jun 10, 2009

L'internet est devenu parmi les moyens les plus efficaces pour l'information et la communication y compris celles scientifiques.

Je vous envoie un site web dans lequel vous trouverez quelques méthodes pour économiser l'eau. Ceci aura un impact positif sur les pays qui souffrent d'un besoin en eau.

Bon courage et bon succès

8:21AM PDT on Jun 10, 2009

An excellent reference for understanding the world water challenge is book, BLUE COVENANT by renowned expert Maude Barlow. Part of the problem with providing sufficient, healthy water is the growth of private corporations that use excessive amounts of water and seek to control what is available for others at the expense of both human needs and environmental preservation. Even locally in Marin County, Ca., an hugely expensive, energy consumptive, environmentally destructive desal plant is being proposed by our water board when conservation alternatives have been analyzed and shown that can provide a sufficient water supply. At a time when we need to reduce our carbon footprint to prevent more drought which in turn causes more water crises, we need to strongly oppose desalination, a choice of last resort, because of its many adverse impacts. Any renewable energy we can generate should be applied to reduction of our current load, not to offset an increased load, if we expect to continue to have planet left to drink on!

7:33AM PDT on Jun 10, 2009

Although this sounds like a great idea, because we have limited fresh water supplies on the Earth as is, wouldn't it eventually lead to everybody having less water to supply for everybody who does not have water?
I would love to shorten my shower time to make sure that somebody else can have some drinking water, but snobby rich people with 3 showers a day may not like an idea like this.

5:23AM PDT on Jun 10, 2009

Fresh clean water is somthing that we in the West take for granted and we quite often over use this valuable commodity.In the third World however clean fresh water is very sparce at all, even if water is available in the firstplace.I personaly drink a lot of water and I would not know what to do if the tap ever run dry.Yet peolple all over the worl have to contend with this possibility every day of their lives.The provision of clean safe fresh water is the right of all human beings.Qute often our water supplies become polluted by unprincipled companies indiscriminatly dumping chemical wast without any thought for the cosequences either for people of wildlife.When this happens they should be held accountable for their actions.

4:23AM PDT on Jun 10, 2009

Not only are all these protections needed -in other countries - they are also needed here as well. We have many regions in which our water has been polluted & allowed to carry high levels of heavy metals & chemical waste due to a weakening of pollution controls by our government.

In addition our water rights have been methodically stripped from us. This is worth your time to investigate!

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