Open Access Nutrition, food, and water security

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Abstract:

Although nutritionists have long been aware of the importance of clean drinking water and sanitation, water is becoming part of the international political agenda only after a slow realization of its scarcity. This is mainly because water has been taken for granted in industrialized countries except during periods of drought. In many areas of developing countries, water shortages already exist. Even with improved management, new sources of water will have to be developed at higher costs per project. Provision of clean water and sanitation has been rendered difficult by rapid urbanization since the middle of the twentieth century. Although cities have managed to provide a water supply, they have not been able to provide sewage and wastewater treatment. Meanwhile, irrigated agriculture uses nearly 70% of world water. In the future, food security will become even more dependent on irrigation. Poor management, due mostly to low salaries and political interference, is one of the main reasons for inefficient water systems. Underpricing of water in towns and on farms discourages conservation. Furthermore, people who do not have access to tap water in developing countries pay 10 times more than those who have taps.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 1999

More about this publication?
  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106
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