The price of access to clean drinking water is increasing all across the nation, according to a new report by the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, that analyzed national data.
Over the past five years, prices have increased by approximately 4%. According to experts, water prices should cost no more than 3% of a family’s income, but data indicates that in some states, families are paying up to 8% of their income for something that ‘should be considered a human right.’ Unfortunately, poor and low-income families are affected that most as their access to water becomes more limited and less feasible.
Pollution, growing populations, the drought, flooding as a result of climate change, are among the factors driving up the price of clean water. Increased pollution creates a need to treat more drinking water; climate change causes heavy rainfall, flooding and overflow of sewage, in turn increasing contamination of water; climate change increases salinity of water and challenges its quality; droughts cause in-access to water and require further travel for water to reach its consumers.
While some experts believe the report is overestimating the burden of increasing water prices on low-income homes, most all agree that major changes are necessary on the legislative level to help poor communities have better access to water.
Read full story at: Grist