If you're reading this, you probably have clean water that runs out of your tap with the twist of a handle. But for almost 800 million people, it's not nearly so simple, and water scarcity is a very real, and very deadly, reality for them.
To help raise awareness of these very real water issues on World Water Day 2014 (March 22nd), here are five shocking facts about water scarcity.
1. Almost 800 million people lack access to clean safe water every day.
2. Almost 3 ½ million people die every year because of water and sanitation and hygiene-related causes, and almost all of them (99%) are in the developing world.
3. Every 21 seconds, another child dies from a water-related illness. Diarrhea, something we don't really consider to be dangerous in the developed world, is actually incredibly deadly, and is the second leading global cause of death for kids under five.
4. More than 1 billion people still practice open defecation every day. In fact, more people have a mobile phone than a toilet.
5. The average American, taking a 5 minute shower, uses more water than an average person in the slums of a developing country does in a whole day.