MINNEAPOLIS, Aug. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Portable Sanitation Association International (PSAI) is celebrating the first World Portable Sanitation Day (WPSD) today.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 2.6 billion people globally – about a third of the world's population – lack access to adequate sanitation. In addition, about 200 million people per year are victims of disasters during which access to existing sanitation is impaired1.
This inaugural celebration is intended to kick off an ongoing campaign to raise awareness and promote change by engaging people all over the world in expanding access to sustainable sanitation. Over time, it is the goal of WPSD's advocates to transform their interest and ingenuity into local solutions that prevent the spread of disease, save water, and improve the quality of life.
"Most people in developed countries don't fully understand what it means to have no adequate sanitation," says PSAI Executive Director Karleen Kos. Women and girls are imperiled as they try to find a place to relieve themselves and deal with feminine hygiene issues. Millions of children die from diarrheal illnesses. Even when efforts are made to improve the quality of drinking water, poor sanitation can lead to the ingestion of bacteria that kills people – as many as 2.2 million per year around the world.
Kos points out that sewer systems, common in the West, are not practical in many parts of the world. "Sewer systems rely on water and infrastructure. Both of these are very limited in countless areas – or they may be nonfunctional during times of disaster. Sustainable sanitation solutions are needed to help address these challenges. World Portable Sanitation Day is about getting everyone on board with solving these problems."
PSAI company members have been raising awareness about World Portable Sanitation Day with a series of activities in local communities. From California to Denver, Ontario to India, portable sanitation providers are working together to help communities better understand how options such as portable sanitation – estimated to save 125 million gallons of fresh water daily – can be part of a sustainable global sanitation solution.
The Portable Sanitation Association International (PSAI) exists to expand and improve portable sanitation as part of a global approach to serving the public and sustaining the planet. As the largest trade association of its kind in the world, the PSAI Is recognized internationally as a credible, authoritative voice providing education and tools to promote safety and health. Established in 1971, the PSAI develops and promotes industry standards; serves as a repository of information and resources for operators, suppliers, government entities and the general public; and provides recognition for excellence in the field. The PSAI has its worldwide headquarters in Bloomington/Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. Visit www.PSAI.org for additional Association news and information.