La Houille Blanche
Number 4, Juin 1993
|Page(s)||233 - 235|
|Published online||01 October 2009|
Hydraulique rurale et santé
Rural hydraulics and health
Association Eau, Agriculture et Santé en milieu tropical
WHO estimates that about 20 million people die in the world each year due to drinking water-related diseases. The absence of safe water and sanitation specially in developing countries plays a major part in this tragedy. Bacteriological analysis of 1 700 water points in West Africa revealed that 100 % of ponds, 70 % of rural wells, 15 % of concrete-lined wells and 7 % of boreholes contain water unsafe for human consumption. So, installation of boreholes, found to be the best safeguard against the bacterial contamination of water, has to be developped in African rural areas. However, from boreholes to consumer, safe drinking water usually becomes polluted with faecal bacteria during transport and storage. For bacteriological decontamination, sterilisation in the UV or by the use of traditional filters has been proposed and affords no guarantee for the health of the consumer. ln contrast, chlorinalion represents a final option for the purification of drinking water associated with improved environmental sanitation. Finally, carefully planned health education is of fundamental importance within the context of rural hydraulic programmes having the power to mobilise the population for the promotion of safe drinking water improving health and greater well-being.
© Société Hydrotechnique de France, 1993
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