Since the recognition of the human rights to water in 2010 and sanitation in 2015, and the inclusion of clean water and sanitation as goal number six of the Sustainable Development Goals, there has been much progress to close the gap in access to safe drinking water and sanitation. After a huge political and diplomatic effort to put water on the international agenda and the titanic efforts of different actors throughout the world, the percentage of people with access to water and sanitation is increasing.
However, we are still faced with staggering figures. More than 2 billion people do not have access to safe drinking water and almost half of the world's population does not have access to decent sanitation. Clearly, there is much work to be done. The trend has been corrected in the right direction but the pace is not fast enough.
This change has been historically promoted by entities and professionals working in water management around the world. To speed up this action plan, it is necessary to involve organisations and people from other sectors, all levels of government and agency types, and, above all, all segments of the population.
This is the paradigm in which global leader Xylem operates: thinking differently, committing to sustainability and shaping creative partnerships on a global scale. The 2015 Sustainability Goals set by the company in 2009 led the way to understand business differently and place sustainability at the centre of all business operations and functions.
Patrick Decker, President and CEO of the company, recently presented Xylem's partnership with the Guardiola Sala Foundation and the involvement of internationally recognized soccer coach Pep Guardiola. This partnership, based on Xylem's alliance with Manchester City Football Club, was created to raise awareness of global water scarcity issues by involving young people in the sport they love.
In the words of Pep Guardiola: " Youth hold the key to our future, and by inspiring them to take action now, the world will be one step closer to becoming a better place for everyone." Let’s hope so.