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No Basic Sanitation

The country with the highest number of people living without access to basic sanitation infrastructure live in India, followed by China and India. Ethiopia and Bangladesh complete the top 5. The lowest rate of people with access to sanitation has Ethiopia with only 7%, followed by Chad and Madagascar, both also just under 10%. There are 22 countries, where only a quarter of the population or less has access to sanitation, all of them in Sub-Saharan Africa. The lowest rate from any European country has Macedonia, where less than half of the population has access to basic sanitation.

Providing access to clean water and sanitation is one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals:

Water scarcity affects more than 40 percent of people around the world, an alarming figure that is projected to increase with the rise of global temperatures as a result of climate change. Although 2.1 billion people have gained access to improved water sanitation since 1990, dwindling supplies of safe drinking water is a major problem impacting every continent.

Ensuring universal access to safe and affordable drinking water for all by 2030 requires we invest in adequate infrastructure, provide sanitation facilities, and encourage hygiene at every level. Protecting and restoring water-related ecosystems such as forests, mountains, wetlands and rivers is essential if we are to mitigate water scarcity. More international cooperation is also needed to encourage water efficiency and support treatment technologies in developing countries. 


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial - ShareAlike 4.0 International License. For any commercial use (including in publishing) a map use license needs to be obtained.

Technical Notes

Territory size shows the proportion of people living with no access to at least basic sanitation services in 2015, including pit latrines and toilets with cesspits, as well as those linked to mains sewerage systems.

Data sources
This map uses data by the World Health Organization’s Global Health Observatory (Water and sanitation) (last accessed March 2018). We aim to map as complete data as possible and therefore estimate data for missing values. In some cases, missing data for very small territories is not used in the cartogram and that area is therefore omitted in the map.

Further notes on the data, as well as all modifications to the original data source are noted in our data sheets. Data for this map will soon be available as a download.

Download data file

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