Zimbabwe

The countries most at risk of a water crisis

17 countries use more than 80% of their available water supplies every year, meaning droughts or increased water demand for agriculture and growing cities could leave them at risk of crisis, according to the World Resources Institute.

Data: World Resources Institute; Chart: Chris Canipe/Axios. Note: Baseline water stress measures the ratio of total water withdrawals to available renewable water supplies.
Expert Voices

Dry taps in India and Zimbabwe signal looming urban water crises

bicyclist transporting colored water cans
A cycle cart of water cans in Chennai, India. Photo: Atul Loke/Getty Images

A dangerous combination of hot and dry weather, poor water management and rising demand is leaving cities such as Chennai, India, and Harare, Zimbabwe, without water for days on end.

The big picture: The pressures on municipal water supplies are likely to worsen with the effects of climate change. Cape Town, South Africa, narrowly averted its "Day Zero" last year, but cities in 17 other countries classified as high stress could soon face their own water crises.