Today, is the 5th annual Imagine a Day Without Water – luckily something most of us don’t have to worry about; however, that’s not the case in a lot of the developing world. It’s an uncomfortable and very concerning fact that 663 million people worldwide lack access to safe, sustainable clean drinking water. Every 21 seconds, a child dies from water-related disease, with unsafe water remaining the #1 killer of children; this should be unacceptable. In our continuing series about the global water crisis, read in today’s blog about how, even in the U.S., we have water issues and the facts about unclean drinking water.

How Flint, Michigan’s Huge Mistake Led to Illness & Death

Looking back on Flint, Michigan and the crisis they endured when their drinking water was contaminated, it was a horrible time for that community, leading to illness and death. It began on April 24, 2014, when city officials, looking to save money, switched the drinking water supply from the Detroit city system to the Flint River. However, the new water was corrosive and not properly treated, which resulted in lead leaking in the water supply from aging pipes into thousands of homes.

Residents started noticing their water was foul-smelling, tasting, and looked a dark color. Skin rashes and hair loss became an issue and then more severe effects became apparent. When the water was tested, it showed some samples had more than 100 times the action level. Some sensitive children who drank the water became exposed to the contaminated water and soon after showed reactions. Because of a horrible decision that had nothing to do with natural disasters, such as flooding, a whole city had unsafe drinking water – in the U.S. There are still ramifications from the city leaders’ decision, even today.

Facts about Unclean Water

Many villages across Africa and other developing world countries are impacted by unsafe drinking water daily – and have been since their existence. They must walk 1 ½ miles or more a day to get raw, untreated water from tainted sources; and in most cases, children end up missing school to get this precious water. Here are some facts, according to Wateraid.org, which also includes sources, about unclean drinking water that should, at the least, alarm you:


  • 1 in 10 people in developing countries don’t have clean water close to home (WASHwatch.org)
  • 31% of schools don’t have clean water (JMP Global baseline Report)
  • Diarrhea caused by dirty water and poor toilets kills a child under 5 every two minutes (WashWatch.org)
  • Globally, 443 million school days are missed annually because of water-related illnesses (Human Development Report, 2006)
  • 785 million people don’t have clean water close to home (WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program (JMP) Report 2019)

Learn How ATS Innova Is helping Solve the Issue of Unclean Drinking Water

Our water experts are continually learning about new and innovative solutions to the world’s water crisis. With water projects in Mali, Africa, Brazil, Uruguay, and other countries, our mission is Improving LIFE, One Drop at a Time. We feel by being Stewards of Humanity™, we can help a child, a family, a community, and eventually, the world. Please call us at 855.215.4600 to learn more and to schedule your FREE consultation.

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