Global water shortage looming

Two people in three across the world will face water shortages by 2025, a UK charity claims. Many of these people will be forced from their homes to seek clean water supplies elsewhere, according to the charity, Tearfund, a relief and development agency cited by BBC. It says global water consumption rose more than twice as fast as world population over the last century. And dwindling water resources could make food supplies prohibitively expensive for more than a billion people. In a report, Running on Empty, published to mark World Water Day on Thursday, Tearfund says the world's water supply is not keeping pace with the demands being made on it. Although efficient water management will enable rich parts of the world to cope, poorer countries will suffer massively, the report says. With consumption having risen six-fold between 1900 and 1995, Tearfund says, the developing world should prepare to greet millions of "water refugees", people forced to leave their homes in search of clean supplies. Already, the charity claims, the scale of water shortage is alarming. For example, 20m people in six countries in west and central Africa rely on Lake Chad for water while the lake has shrunk by 95% in the last 38 years. Two-thirds of China’s cities are facing severe water shortages. In Iran, up to 60% of people living in rural areas could be forced by drought to migrate to the cities.

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