Photos: Polluted waterways around the world ahead of World Water Day

  • According to the United Nations, about 4 billion people experience severe water shortages for at least one month a year and around 1.6 billion people - almost a quarter of the world's population - have problems accessing a clean, safe water supply.In the run-up to the UN's World Water Day on March 22, Reuters photographers used drones to capture dramatic pictures of polluted waterways around the world.
UPDATED ON MAR 20, 2021 03:56 PM IST 12 Photos
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An aerial view shows the Cuyahoga River in Akron, Ohio, US, on March 17. In 1969 the Cuyahoga River caught fire due to pollution, causing the US Congress to pass the clean water act and the Ohio EPA was formed. According to the United Nations, about 4 billion people experience severe water shortages for at least one month a year and around 1.6 billion people have problems accessing a clean, safe water supply.(Megan Jelinger / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows the Cuyahoga River in Akron, Ohio, US, on March 17. In 1969 the Cuyahoga River caught fire due to pollution, causing the US Congress to pass the clean water act and the Ohio EPA was formed. According to the United Nations, about 4 billion people experience severe water shortages for at least one month a year and around 1.6 billion people have problems accessing a clean, safe water supply.(Megan Jelinger / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows workers collecting plastic trash that litters the polluted Potpecko Lake near a dam's hydroelectric plant close to the town of Priboj, Serbia on January 29. Two barges sailed up and down a vast stretch of floating trash on the Potpecko artificial lake in Serbia, collecting tons of garbage that almost clogged the dam that crosses it.(Marko Djurica / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows workers collecting plastic trash that litters the polluted Potpecko Lake near a dam's hydroelectric plant close to the town of Priboj, Serbia on January 29. Two barges sailed up and down a vast stretch of floating trash on the Potpecko artificial lake in Serbia, collecting tons of garbage that almost clogged the dam that crosses it.(Marko Djurica / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows garbage disposed on the shore of Guanabara bay in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on March 17. One of the legacy promises of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro was the cleanup of Guanabara Bay. After four years, the situation has worsened, Reuters reported citing data from state environmental institute INEA.(Pilar Olivares / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows garbage disposed on the shore of Guanabara bay in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on March 17. One of the legacy promises of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro was the cleanup of Guanabara Bay. After four years, the situation has worsened, Reuters reported citing data from state environmental institute INEA.(Pilar Olivares / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows hover boats on the ice of Lake Baikal near the village of Bolshoye Goloustnoye in the Irkutsk region, Russia on March 8. Lake Baikal remains one of the world's cleanest freshwater reservoirs. But pollution and the growth of weeds are harming microorganisms, sponges and some molluscs that filter its waters.(Maxim Shemetov / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows hover boats on the ice of Lake Baikal near the village of Bolshoye Goloustnoye in the Irkutsk region, Russia on March 8. Lake Baikal remains one of the world's cleanest freshwater reservoirs. But pollution and the growth of weeds are harming microorganisms, sponges and some molluscs that filter its waters.(Maxim Shemetov / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows people walking on a log along the bank of the River Tame near Denton, England on March 17. A University of Manchester report in 2018 found that the River Tame near Denton had 'the worst' level of micro-plastic pollution ever recorded anywhere in the world at that time.(Phil Noble / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows people walking on a log along the bank of the River Tame near Denton, England on March 17. A University of Manchester report in 2018 found that the River Tame near Denton had 'the worst' level of micro-plastic pollution ever recorded anywhere in the world at that time.(Phil Noble / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows domestic waste floating on the stream of the Citarum river in Bandung, Indonesia on March 15. The government has pledged to clean the Citarum river, considered among the world's most polluted, and make the water there drinkable by 2025, but household and industrial waste have continued to flow in its stream.(Willy Kurniawan / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows domestic waste floating on the stream of the Citarum river in Bandung, Indonesia on March 15. The government has pledged to clean the Citarum river, considered among the world's most polluted, and make the water there drinkable by 2025, but household and industrial waste have continued to flow in its stream.(Willy Kurniawan / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows rotten trees in a toxic lake near the southwestern town of Yatagan in Mugla province, Turkey, on February 24, 2021. According to environmental activist Deniz Gumusel, the toxic lake, known as an ash dam, is created by a mix of wastewater and polluted ash which are both produced at the nearby Yatagan power station, Reuters reported.(Umit Bektas / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows rotten trees in a toxic lake near the southwestern town of Yatagan in Mugla province, Turkey, on February 24, 2021. According to environmental activist Deniz Gumusel, the toxic lake, known as an ash dam, is created by a mix of wastewater and polluted ash which are both produced at the nearby Yatagan power station, Reuters reported.(Umit Bektas / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows a discarded sofa on the Tiete river near Ecological Tiete Park in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on March 17. The Rio Tiete, which flows like a vast open sewer through Brazil's largest city Sao Paulo, is among the most polluted in the country. Over 100 km of the river are considered dead or too polluted for almost all marine life, Reuters reported.(Amanda Perobelli / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows a discarded sofa on the Tiete river near Ecological Tiete Park in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on March 17. The Rio Tiete, which flows like a vast open sewer through Brazil's largest city Sao Paulo, is among the most polluted in the country. Over 100 km of the river are considered dead or too polluted for almost all marine life, Reuters reported.(Amanda Perobelli / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows people fishing from a wooden bridge at the Pisang Batu river, which flows through a densely populated area and is polluted by domestic waste, in Bekasi, on the outskirts of Jakarta, Indonesia, on March 16, 2021. Pisang Batu river, on the outskirts of Jakarta, made national headlines in 2019 after plastic garbage and organic waste from nearby households completely covered its surface stretching 1.5 kilometres, Reuters reported.(Willy Kurniawan / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows people fishing from a wooden bridge at the Pisang Batu river, which flows through a densely populated area and is polluted by domestic waste, in Bekasi, on the outskirts of Jakarta, Indonesia, on March 16, 2021. Pisang Batu river, on the outskirts of Jakarta, made national headlines in 2019 after plastic garbage and organic waste from nearby households completely covered its surface stretching 1.5 kilometres, Reuters reported.(Willy Kurniawan / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows cars moving next to the Interceptor Poniente canal in Cuautitlan, State of Mexico, Mexico, on March 18. Drainage system waterways around densely-populated Mexico City, like the Interceptor Poniente, are heavily polluted with sewage and trash from nearby communities.(Carlos Jasso / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows cars moving next to the Interceptor Poniente canal in Cuautitlan, State of Mexico, Mexico, on March 18. Drainage system waterways around densely-populated Mexico City, like the Interceptor Poniente, are heavily polluted with sewage and trash from nearby communities.(Carlos Jasso / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows water contaminated with raw sewage flowing via open channels into the ocean at Hann Bay on the eastern edge of Senegal's Dakar peninsula, whose sandy shorefront is discoloured by stagnant algae, on March 17. Inadequate sewer infrastructure in the adjacent neighbourhoods of Hann-Bel-air and Mbao means large amounts of solid and liquid waste is released into the bay untreated year-round.(Zohra Bensemra / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows water contaminated with raw sewage flowing via open channels into the ocean at Hann Bay on the eastern edge of Senegal's Dakar peninsula, whose sandy shorefront is discoloured by stagnant algae, on March 17. Inadequate sewer infrastructure in the adjacent neighbourhoods of Hann-Bel-air and Mbao means large amounts of solid and liquid waste is released into the bay untreated year-round.(Zohra Bensemra / REUTERS)

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An aerial view shows a drain pipe feeding into the Euphrates River carrying sewage, near Najaf, Iraq on March 16. While the UN's Sustainable Development Goals call for water and sanitation for all by 2030, the world body says water scarcity is increasing and more than half the world's population will be living in water-stressed regions by 2050.(Thaier Al-Sudani / REUTERS)

An aerial view shows a drain pipe feeding into the Euphrates River carrying sewage, near Najaf, Iraq on March 16. While the UN's Sustainable Development Goals call for water and sanitation for all by 2030, the world body says water scarcity is increasing and more than half the world's population will be living in water-stressed regions by 2050.(Thaier Al-Sudani / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON MAR 20, 2021 03:56 PM IST
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