Dhaka, Bangladesh capital requires 2.2 billion litres a day, but can only produce 1.9 to 2 billion, the city’s Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (WASA) reported. WASA runs 600 deep tube wells in the city to extract water, and there are also 2,000 private tube wells throughout the city. About 87 percent of Dhaka residents use ground water, mostly from deep tube wells, while the rest use treated surface water. Rains in mid-April improved the situation but the problem is unlikely to go away.
The official population of Dhaka is 12.8 million but unofficial estimates put the actual figure at closer to 15 million, including some 3.4 million living in slums. Another 300,000 to 400,000 people migrate to the city each year, which has witnessed a four-fold increase in its population in the last 25 years. According to the World Bank, the mega-city has the highest population growth in the world. The 2012 UN-Water Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking Water report released in April, notes that 70 percent of countries are falling behind the trends required to meet their access targets for drinking water. (IRIN)
Featured image: Residents use what they can to gather enough drinking water in Dhaka. Increasing water demands on the city are not being met (Credit: Mushfique Wadud/IRIN )