Saturday, March 28, 2009

UN expert urges Costa Rica to improve water safety

(Xinhua) - A United Nations expert on Friday urged the Costa Rica government to take measures to improve water safety, saying the country is facing a great risk by the current management of waste water.

About 96.5 percent of waste water discharged into rivers and sea goes without any treatment, UN independent advisor and expert on water and human rights Catarina De Albuquerque said.

The expert, who just ended a visit to the country last week, said there are great differences between areas of the country.

For example, in the urban areas about 90 percent of citizens have access to drinking water, while in rural areas far from the capital the rate is only 60 percent.

These inequalities affect in particular indigenous peoples, Afro-Costa Rican, migrants and poor people, De Alburquerque said, noting it is urgent for the government to review and adjust the country's Law of Water.

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