Addressing poor farmers who lack access to water is essential so as not to exclude anyone from sustainable development, said the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
On the occasion of World Water Day, the expert of that agency Jippe Hoogeveen assured Efe that "many poor producers do not normally have access to resources such as water and, if they are guaranteed a source of water, that can help them increase their income and get out of poverty. "
Sub-Saharan Africa continues to have the greatest problems of water poverty compared to Asia or Latin America, where there is more irrigation and more farmers have access to water, according to Hoogeveen.
FAO has participated in the preparation of the annual report of the United Nations on the development of water resources, which includes data such as the following:
– More than 2 billion people in the world experience high water stress and about 4,000 million people suffer water shortages at least one month a year.
– The use of water grew worldwide by 1% annually since 1980 and, according to forecasts, its demand will continue to increase at a similar rate until 2050, which is up to 30% more than what is currently used.
– Agriculture represents the economic sector that consumes more water, 69% of what is extracted worldwide, and will continue to be so in the coming decades.
– Nine out of ten natural disasters are related to water. Between 1995 and 2015, floods accounted for 43% of all documented disasters, affecting 2.3 billion people, while droughts were 5% and damaged 1.1 billion.
– 80% of the world's cultivated land receives rainwater and 60% of the food produced under these conditions is highly dependent on climate variability. According to some studies, if they were added some type of irrigation, the yields could double or even triple per hectare in crops such as wheat, sorghum and corn.
– To eradicate hunger in 2030, UN agencies estimate that additional investments in agriculture worth 265,000 million dollars a year will be needed worldwide, of which almost 200,000 million should be destined to productive systems for the poorest, including those linked to water.