Today we celebrate World Toilet Day, a reminder to take action to ensure that everyone has a safe toilet by 2030. This goal reflects No. 6 on the list of United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to achieve universal access to adequate sanitation and end the practice of open defecation by 2030.
More than half of the global population (62.5 percent) still lack safely managed sanitation services, according to U.N. data. Some 4.5 billion people are without a safe toilet and 1.8 million drink water possibly contaminated with feces, leaving them vulnerable to diarrhea and other water-borne illnesses.
This toilet crisis forces 892 million people to defecate in the open — in the streets, in the bushes and by rivers and other water sources — contaminating the water and soil that sustain human life. The crisis is most severe in parts of Africa and Asia facing extreme poverty and and a population boom.
For more information, visit the World Toilet Day website.