Africa and Africans need safe water to drink. They need access to clean water.
It amazes me how I turn on the taps in the morning to bath/shower, to make coffee and breakfast, to water the garden, all at the touch of a button and that women still have to walk (according to greenanswers.com) about four miles and the weight of water they carry on their heads is about the equivalent to the average airport luggage allowance.
Today 1.1 billion people still do not have adequate access to safe water and 2.4 billion people are without appropriate sanitation.
1.1 billion people need water to drink, to bathe in, to cook, to wash, to sanitise, to grow food and plants and to stay hygienic.
Scientists at Stellenbosch University (in Cape Town) have developed a tea bag filter to provide safe drinking water. It has been developed for people who need it the most so it is an inexpensive filter which can fit into the neck of a bottle and can quickly purify drinking water.
The filter is composed of three integral parts, making it unique among filters, according to Professor Eugene Cloete, Dean of the Faculty of Science at Stellenbosch University and developer of the filter.
"Bacteria and viruses can't move through, and then we kill them so they don't concentrate inside the filter," Cloete said. "There's nothing like this in the world."
One of the advantages of the 'tea bag' water filter is that it is portable and can be used by people travelling to areas without clean water, or those who do not have a regular clean water supply. "It is simply impossible to build purification infrastructure at every polluted stream. So we have to take the solution to the people," Cloete told online magazine Science in Africa.
Cloete said he hopes to begin production of the filters by the end of 2010.
Read the entire story: http://allafrica.com/stories/201008310057.html
That's just one solution and it sounds like it can only be used on bottle necks, so still need a solution for cups, buckets, baths.
However this tea bag filter will prevent bacteria from getting through so it will save lives.
It is not going to be a primary source. Work in Africa is needed on dams, waterholes, wells, treatment plants and Africa is still reliant on help from the rest of the world to provide enough money and support to help them to become self-sufficient.
I have found a couple of businesses or charities who are trying to and working of finding solutions for providing safe/healthy/pure/clean water for all those in need in Africa:
http://solution4africa.com/ - water solution for Africa
http://www.ws4a.org/home.html - Water Solutions For Africa
http://www.nomadsland.com/video/rope-pump-a-simpler-solution-for-clean-water/ - rope pump
http://www.un.org/ecosocdev/geninfo/afrec/vol21no3/213-water.html - Bringing water to Africa's poor
http://www.cleanwaterpartners.net/access-to-clean-water-in-africa/ - Clean Water Solution
Looks like Africa needs billions in aid. Billions to provide the entire continent with access to water, like we have here in Australia.
Most countries who cannot afford or do not have access to safe, pure, clean water have to rely on international donors for clean water.
And most countries without access to safe/clean/pure water have to develop technologies for purifying water.
I found a link that Kwazulu Natal has Umgeni Water Amanzi which supplies some 340 000 000 kilolitres of clean, safe drinking water to almost 4.8 million people annually.
I hope that one day, soon, all these people will have access to water, electricity, education, spare change, a roof over their heads and everything that I have (and take for granted).
Today is Blog Action Day; hopefully countries will start funding technologies, dams, waterholes, treatment plants in Africa to give these people access to water.