Important facts of water pollution.
40% of America’s rivers and 46% of America’s lakes are too polluted for fishing, swimming, or aquatic life.
1.2 trillion gallons of untreated sewage, storm water, and industrial waste are discharged into US waters annually.
Polluted drinking waters are a problem for about half of the world’s population. Each year there are about 250 million cases of water-based diseases, resulting in roughly 5 to 10 million deaths.
In 2010, there was a huge oil spill in America by BP. Of the 400 miles of Louisiana coast, approximately 125 miles have been polluted by the oil spill. Over 1,000 animals (birds, turtles, mammals) have been reported dead, including many already on the endangered species list. Of the animals affected by the spill that are still alive only about 6% have been reported cleaned, but many biologists and other scientists predict they will die too. In November 2012, BP agreed a settlement with the US government worth $4.5bn, including a $1.26bn criminal fine.
In April 2010, The Transocean Oil Rig exploded, killing 11 workers. The disaster also damaged the Gulf of Mexico coast causing one of the biggest environmental disasters in US history. In January 2013, the company paid $400m (£248m) in criminal penalties and a $1bn civil fine after pleading guilty to violating the Clean Water Act.
In developing countries, 70 percent of industrial wastes are dumped untreated into waters where they pollute the usable water supply.
How the world uses freshwater:
• about 70 percent for irrigation
• about 22 percent for industry
• about 8 percent for domestic use
Source: World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP)
27% of the urban population in the developing world do not have piped water in their homes.
A lack of safe water and sanitation in cities leads to cholera, malaria and diarrhoea.