Global Risks Report 2020

Water crises remains a major global risk.


Each year the Global Risks Report is published by the World Economic Forum.

For the first time in the survey’s 10-year outlook, the top five global risks in terms of likelihood are all environmental.

“Water crises” is number 8 in terms of likelihood and number 5 in terms of impact (6 years running in the top 5), and therefore firmly stationed in the top right hand corner of the top 7 things that everyone should concern themselves with.

Interestingly, the Global Shapers Community, the World Economic Forum’s network of young people, put the risk of water crises much higher.

The UN may have ​declared water ​to be a human ​right in 2010 but the additional ​investment ​needed to ​achieve the ​Sustainable ​Development ​Goal Six of ​ensuring ​availability ​and sustainable ​management of ​water and ​sanitation for ​all, is ​approximately $​1.7 Trillion ​USD until 2030 ​– about ​three times the ​current ​investment ​levels. The broader ​needs for water ​infrastructure ​range from $6.7 ​Trillion USD by ​2030 to $22.6 ​Trillion USD by ​2050.  In short, nowhere near enough is being spent to head off the crises.

It's interesting to read the report’s take on Infectious diseases.  Non-communicable diseases had replaced infectious ones as the leading cause of death, downgrading the risk, and perhaps blind-siding assessors to the possibility of a new infectious disease appearing.

But for risks that are predicted, it’s clear not enough is being done to address them.  And for the water sector crises are therefore inevitable.

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