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Announcements: World Water Day — March 22, 2012

World Water Day, sponsored by the United Nations, has been observed on March 22 each year since 1993. This year, World Water Day focuses on the link between water use and food production, in conjunction with its theme, "Water and Food Security: The World is Thirsty Because We are Hungry."

Food production accounts for 70% of all water use, more than the amount needed for domestic and industrial use combined. The average person drinks approximately 2.5 liters of water a day, whereas 15,000 liters of water are required to produce 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds) of beef. As the world population continues to grow, the demand for fresh water needed for food production will continue to increase, placing a strain on the world's fresh water supply.*

Since 1990, the number of persons able to access improved drinking water and sanitation resources has increased by 2 billion and 1.8 billion respectively (1). Despite these gains, hundreds of millions still lack access to these essential resources (1). CDC's global water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program provides expertise and interventions to increase global access to safe water, adequate sanitation, and improved hygiene.


  1. United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), World Health Organization. Progress on drinking water and sanitation: 2012 update. New York, NY: UNICEF, World Health Organization; 2012. Available at Accessed March 13, 2012.

* Additional information available at

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