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Lib Dems highlight disparity of water resources

March 22, 2004 12:00 AM

To mark UN World Water Day (Monday 22nd March) and following Norman Baker's adjournment debate on 'Access to Clean Water', Liberal Democrat MPs demonstrated the incredible disparity of water resources across the globe.

Tom Brake, Don Foster, Sue Doughty, Norman Baker and Tom Fewins demostrating relative water useWater use per person for drinking, washing and cooking every 18 minutes is equivalent to the following:

Ethiopia - 1 tablespoon - Tom Brake MP

Mozambique - 1 standard bottle of bubbles - Don Foster MP

Afghanistan - 2 cans of soft drink - Sue Doughty MP

UK - 1 watering can - Norman Baker MP

USA - 1 garden bucket - Tom Fewins, Researcher to Norman Baker

Tom Brake, Liberal Democrat Shadow International Development Secretary, said:

"In 2000 more than 1 billion people worldwide did not have access to safe water and 2.5 billion people had improper or no access to sanitation. That situation will get worse unless we take drastic action as a planet.

"We have a very disparate approach to water. While many in the Developing World struggle to have even the basic requirement for life, others in the UK, America and elsewhere treat it as if it were endlessly replenishable.

"It is not sufficient for the Government to think the right thing, nor just to publish documents saying the right thing. The scale of the problem is such that the Government must take action now to ensure that there is a big turnaround in how the world deals with water."

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