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Challenges of Water Supply

Water shortages and pollution are among the top challenges faced by Africa’s population. Africa faces multiple problems with environmental impacts that negatively impact public health. One major environmental challenge is the inability for urban and rural Africans to have access to a safe and clean drinking water source. Lack of access can lead to serious health problems such as cholera and dehydration.

population growth

Urbanization has led to higher rates of population growth, creating a greater need for reliable and more efficient water supplies. Moreover, increased competition among countries for fresh drinking water will likely increase pressure to improve water quality and reduce pollution. To meet increasing needs and reduce the risk of disease caused by contaminated water, Africa needs to build more water treatment plants to treat polluted wastewater before it enters the municipal sewage system. Treatment plants can improve water quality, kill harmful bacteria, and remove sediments from raw water.

lack of insfrastructure

Although improved sanitation has reduced the risks of disease, it has not solved the problem of inadequate or deteriorating water supply and sanitation in rural areas. Sewage spills and leakage from sewers account for many of the diseases affecting people in developing countries.

improper waste management

Because of poor municipal sanitation and lack of necessary equipment and technology, water supply and sanitation remain a major concern for rural communities. Wastewater pollution, especially in major cities, poses a threat to aquatic environments and their inhabitants. Emissions from agricultural and industrial facilities contribute to the contamination of lakes, rivers, and wastewaters.

increased demand

The need for clean drinking water and improved sanitation has led to an increase in the demand for water sources throughout the developing world. Demand is also growing because of reasons such as drought and increased food production. These factors have made water resources even more precious.

environmental pollution

Major environmental problems, such as wastewater treatment, lead to negative effects on aquatic ecosystems and the habitats of human beings. Industrial and agricultural activities contribute to the pollution of freshwater and sewage-water systems. The combination of these factors results in the pollution of freshwater resources, thereby threatening the future of mankind on this planet.

climate change

Rapid climate change is exerting great negative changes to the environment and precipitation patterns. This trend is causing droughts, floods, and melting glaciers. If unchecked, these drastic weather events will greatly impact the water supply.

energy, poverty, and sanitization

Rapid population growth, increasing urbanization, and modernization all contribute to greater energy demand, pollution, and deterioration of water supplies. This in turn will have dire implications on the health and welfare of rural people and will adversely affect agriculture and fisheries. In addition, a lack of basic sanitation and effective wastewater treatment programs will affect agricultural productivity. In the face of these pressures, the shared future freshwater resource will be at risk.

stabilizing the environment

To reduce global water shortage, the world needs to seriously address water pollution. This can be achieved through effective regulation of industrial emissions, stricter regulation of chemicals used in agriculture, and stricter regulations of waste disposal. Reducing water stress will also require an increase in recycling and reusing household waste. Greater investment in flood and drought prevention and mitigation as well as in green technology will also decrease global water scarcity. These actions will contribute to lessening the effects of climate change, stabilize the soil and water quality, promote better socioeconomic development, and prevent food and water insecurity.

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