Open defecation is widespread in South Asia: UN

Last Updated: Tuesday, March 16, 2010 - 13:58

United Nations: Though open defecation is
on a worldwide decline, the problem is widespread in South Asia where an estimated 44 per cent of the population defecate in the open, according to a new UN report.

The report by UNICEF and the World Health Organisation
also said sanitation facilities are not improving at a fast
enough rate to meet the Millennium Development Goals.

"The good news is that open defecation - the
riskiest sanitation practice of all - is on the decline
worldwide," the report -- Sanitation and Drinking Water: 2010
Update Report -- said.

Nearly a quarter of the world practiced it in 1990,
but that figure has dropped to 17 percent in 2008, it said.

In the developed world, almost the entire population
(99 per cent) used improved facilities as compared to 52 per
cent in developing nations.

The report says almost 39 per cent of the world`s
population or over 2.6 billion people are living without
improved sanitation facilities.

"If the current trend continues unchanged, the
international community will miss the 2015 sanitation MDG by
almost one billion people," the study said.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, March 16, 2010 - 13:58

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