Water: A precious gift wasted and taken for granted

Translated by Anastasia Tsitsani 

Based on the original article in Greek by Κατερίνα Μαρίντσιου

Up to 60% of the human adult body is water, making it a necessity when it comes to our survival. Other than that, its use is important even in other parts of our daily routine, such as hygiene and irrigation. Therefore, it is undoubtedly of great importance, but why is that it is taken for granted so often? 

Notwithstanding the number of human rights that have been established, the human right to water, which is such a crucial and priceless element of our everyday lives, was acknowledged at 2010. So, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly Resolution 64/292 established the “right to water and sanitation” as a human right and as an obligation for all member states and international organizations to provide it.

Water and earth

In developed countries, it is unfortunately taken for granted by many people. As a result, its daily use is also considered certain. Meanwhile, up to now, the phenomenon of drought affects 2/3 of the population worldwide. Half of these people live in China and India, facing water scarcity very regularly. According to various sources, China is undergoing the most serious drought in its history. Recurrent events of water scarcity can also be seen in the USE and other regions of South Europe. The situation is aggravated in places such as Yemen, Iran and Mexico.

The increased population growth, the change at the consumption patterns and the extension of irrigation, all contribute to the never-ending demand worldwide. Moreover, the situation is about to get worse, causing severe climate change. 

Despite the fact that the right to water has been established as a human right, 884 million of people suffer from drinking shortage, meanwhile more than 2.6 billion of people do not have access to sewage disposal. Furthermore, 2.000.000 people die every year due to illnesses caused by contaminated water or drinking shortage, while for 443 days, students stay off school because of illnesses concerning water and sewage disposal. In fact, H2O scarcity kills more children than AIDS, malaria and measles combined. The number of 5-year-old children affected by this, reaches the unbelievable number of 1.500.000. So, the daily and right consumption of water is necessary in order to prevent not only illnesses, but also deaths. However, access to a potable driking source is also necessary, since it is a universal good and an established human right

Water and You

However, there are many people, especially young ones, who do not estimate its value, even though it is provided to them infinitely. They say either that they do not like its taste or that they forget to drink it and end up drinking too little daily. The result? Dehydration. Its symptoms are various and similar to the ones of a common flu; dizziness, fatigue, tachycardia and headache – to name but a few. Dehydration is a very frequent phenomenon, and most importantly, a serious one. We should not wait until we are thirsty in order to drink water.  

Much like the planet, your organism is signaling S.O.S. Do not just wait on “others” to act. Realise your needs and their cost, while trying to drink water in moderation. Your actions will be personal, but the results will be collective and noticeable in the long run. Water and life are precious and should not be taken for granted. 

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