October 21, 2019

LATE-STAGE SOCIALISM: Venezuela’s Water System is Collapsing.

In Venezuela, a crumbling economy and the collapse of even basic state infrastructure means water comes irregularly — and drinking it is an increasingly risky gamble. Venezuela’s current rate of infant mortality from diarrhea, which is closely related to water quality, is six times higher than 15 years ago, according to the World Health Organization.

But the government stopped releasing official public health data years ago.

So The New York Times commissioned researchers from the Universidad Central de Venezuela to recreate the water quality study they had conducted regularly for the water utility in Caracas from 1992 until 1999.

The scientists found that about a million residents were exposed to contaminated supplies. This puts them at risk of contracting waterborne viruses that could sicken them and threatens the lives of children and the most vulnerable.

“This is a potential epidemic,” said Jose María De Viana, who headed Caracas’s water utility, Hidrocapital, until 1999. “It’s very serious. It’s unacceptable.”

It isn’t unacceptable — it’s damn near inevitable, given the lack of maintenance.

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