Billions of people around the globe live without safely managed drinking water, sanitation and hygiene services. COVID-19 has underscored the need for universal access to these services to combat the pandemic and promote a healthy, green and sustainable recovery. Water is required across all sectors of society to produce food, energy, goods and services. Over the last century, global water use has increased at more than twice the rate of population growth. Many water sources are drying up, becoming more polluted or both. In addition to water stress and water pollution, countries are facing growing challenges linked to degraded water-related ecosystems, water scarcity caused by climate change, underinvestment in water and sanitation, and insufficient cooperation on transboundary waters. The world is not on track to achieve Goal 6. A dramatic acceleration in current rates of progress and integrated and holistic approaches to water management are badly needed.

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