Privatization of water, which is often an outcome of desalination projects, can lead to the commodification of water, where access to water becomes a privilege for those who can afford it rather than a basic human right.
Industrialization of coast lines
The Pillars of the Human Right to Water
Access to clean water is a fundamental human right that is essential for the survival and well-being of all individuals. However, despite this recognition, many people around the world still lack access to safe and affordable water for personal and domestic use. The issue of water scarcity has become even more pressing with the increasing global population and climate change, leading to rising temperatures and changing precipitation patterns.
The human right to water has four pillars: safe, affordable, clean, and accessible. Safe water means that it is free from harmful contaminants, and its consumption does not pose a threat to health. Affordable water means that it is reasonably priced, and everyone can afford it without incurring financial hardship. Clean water means that it is free from pollutants, such as chemicals and microorganisms, that can harm human health. Accessible water means that it is physically available to all individuals, including those living in rural areas, marginalized communities, and those with disabilities.
The privatization of water, which often occurs as a result of desalination projects, can lead to the commodification of water. This means that access to water becomes a privilege for those who can afford it, rather than a basic human right. The privatization of water also leads to the depletion of groundwater resources, leaving communities vulnerable to water scarcity.
Water scarcity is a significant global challenge that affects millions of people worldwide. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 2.2 billion people do not have access to safe drinking water, and approximately 4.2 billion people lack access to safe sanitation services. This has severe consequences on human health, leading to diseases such as cholera, typhoid fever, and dysentery.
The human right to water is recognized by the United Nations, which has emphasized the importance of ensuring access to safe and affordable water for all individuals. However, despite this recognition, the United States has remained largely on the sidelines during international discussions on water challenges. This is despite the fact that California is one of the few states in the US that recognizes water as a human right.
California has been grappling with water scarcity issues for years, and it is estimated that nearly a million residents still lack access to clean, safe, and affordable drinking water. This has been particularly challenging for marginalized communities, such as those living in rural areas or those with low-income households. The state has been working towards addressing this issue, but there is still a long way to go.
There are several initiatives underway to address the issue of water scarcity and ensure that everyone has access to clean and affordable water. The UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 6 aims to ensure access to water and sanitation for all by 2030.
Access to clean and affordable water is a fundamental human right that should be available to all individuals, regardless of their socioeconomic status or geographic location. Privatization of water resources and the commodification of water should be avoided to ensure that water remains a basic human right and not a privilege.