The international community has agreed to halve the proportion of people without access to safe water and sanitation by 2015. Achieving this task is a major challenge that will require strengthened efforts from all stakeholders, and, according to some estimates, a doubling of financial commitment (see Winpenny 2003). Currently, 1.1 billion people do not have access to safe water supply, and 2.4 billion do not have access to basic sanitation. Many of these people live in rural areas, but the challenge is also large, and increasing, in urban areas. The year 2005 will be crucial for the internationally agreed targets, and for other Millennium Development Goals (see Reisen 2004). On present trends it is unlikely that they will be met. To overcome the obstacles to achieving the goals, it is vital that additional measures be agreed in 2005.
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