KINGSTON, R.I. – March 23, 2023 – According to the U.N. World Water Development Report 2023 released this week, in 2020 more than one-quarter of the world’s population (2 billion people) lacked access to safe drinking water and 46% (3.6 billion) lacked access to safely managed sanitation. Worldwide, unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) are responsible for the deaths of around 1,000 children under 5 every day. 

Access to safe water, proper sanitation and hygiene are essential for human survival. As the United Nations convenes its first major conference on water quality since 1977, researchers at the University of Rhode Island are seeking better ways to provide potable water and stop pollution from contaminating water supplies.

The following experts are available for interview:

Associate Professor Vinka Oyanedel-Craver is helping communities in remote villages in the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, India, Jordan, and Kenya manufacture inexpensive ceramic water filters. Her students have developed a small, portable solar water treatment system for rural cities in the Dominican Republic. Hear from Professor Oyanedel-Craver.

Assistant Professor Ali Akanda’s  expertise lies in computer modeling of water supplies, floods and droughts. He combines the models with research in water security, climate change and global health to create early warning systems to benefit public health.

Assistant Professor Joseph Goodwill researches water treatment methods designed to improve water quality when affected by extreme events such as a pandemic or hurricane. Goodwill’s solution: an antifragile approach to water treatment; that is, technology that actually improves water’s performance under volatile conditions. Hear from Professor Goodwill

Professor Thomas Boving, currently on a Fulbright Scholarship at the Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, is a researcher whose interests include environmental engineering, hydrogeology, water treatment, and groundwater remediation. He also works extensively in Indonesia, where he and a URI colleague have used floating wetlands to clean ponds and other bodies of water. Hear from Professor Boving.

To learn more about the work of these researchers and others, visit URI Water for the World, or contact , to schedule an interview with an expert.


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