Los problema con la bebida que enfrenta el Tercer Mundo

SINGAPUR – Durante su reciente reunión en Davos, el Foro Económico Mundial dio a conocer su noveno informe anual sobre Riesgos Globales, que se basa en una encuesta realizada a más de 700 líderes empresariales, funcionarios gubernamentales e instituciones sin fines de lucro para identificar los riesgos más graves que el mundo enfrentará durante la próxima década. Quizás lo más notable es que cuatro de las diez amenazas que figuran en el informe de este año están relacionadas con el agua.

Estos riesgos incluyen las crisis relacionadas al agua derivadas de las sequías e inundaciones, el deterioro de la calidad y la mala gestión del agua; la falta de mitigación del y adaptación al cambio climático; la mayor incidencia de fenómenos meteorológicos extremos; y las crisis alimentarias, que son impulsadas, por lo menos en parte, por la escasez de agua. Sin embargo, el informe no destaca la preocupación más urgente relacionada con el agua: cómo garantizar el suministro de suficiente agua potable. Es más, si bien las organizaciones internacionales reconocen el problema, su enfoque para abordarlo está totalmente equivocado.

En 2012, las Naciones Unidas anunciaron que la meta de los Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio relativa a reducir a la mitad el número de personas sin acceso sostenible al agua potable se había alcanzado antes de lo previsto, quedando solamente 783 millones de personas sin acceso al agua potable. Pero, el Centro del Tercer Mundo para el Manejo del Agua estima que por lo menos tres mil millones de personas en todo el mundo aún beben agua de dudosa calidad. AquaFed, que representa a las compañías privadas de agua, indica que esta cifra estaría en un nivel de 3,4 miles de millones de personas – es decir, casi la mitad de la población mundial. Esto sugiere que la declaración de victoria de la ONU fue, como mínimo, prematura.

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