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Water At A Crossroad
Water At A Crossroad
Water At A Crossroad
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  • 1. ADAPTING TO A NEW CLIMATE ENERGY AND FOOD CRUNCH BEYOND TOILETS AND TARGETS WATER FOR ECONOMIC RECOVERY?
  • 2. © Photo: Farl. 4 Preface 6 A Groundbreaking Event 12 Adapting to Climate Change: © Photo: Marie Verpilleux. The Time is Now 18 Before Disasters Strike 24 The Water, Food and Energy Nexus: Breaking New Ground 30 2015 is around the corner! Are we prepared? © Photo: APWF. 36 Weathering a “Perfect Storm” 42 The Governance Challenge 48 Beyond Water Wars: Pledges for Hydro-Solidarity © Photo: Angela Sevin. 52 The Right Debate 58 Unlocking the Data Treasure Chest © Photo: Aloshbennet. 03
  • 3. W “ ater is life” is said in every language in the world. And yet, water is threatened today: rampant demographic growth, anarchic urbanisation, disturbed climate, pollution, etc. These threats are caused by humans and their erratic behaviour, which is water’s primary enemy. We are, thus, confronted by a major challenge: the demand for water is ever-increasing and, at the same time, we must protect, value, stock and even re-use water resources. We must establish harmonious sharing of water between man and nature. Sharing water is a difficult task and an essentially political responsibility, for the future of water depends not only on technological progress, but especially on political commitments. Beyond the some 25,000 participants present at the Forum of Istanbul and all those throughout the world who, over the course of three years, contributed to its preparation, the active participation of numerous Heads of State and Government and hundreds of ministers, parliamentarians and mayors constitutes a major step for the cause of water. It marks the passage, within the international community, from hydro-technical to hydro-political. Water demands the attention, respect and engagement of all the world’s leaders. For a long time to come, they will be solicited to increase the volume of available water to respond to the needs of global growth. For a long time to come, rivers, lakes and underground aquifers will be stretched a little further to quench the ever-increasing thirst of the planet. 04
  • 4. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 But to increase indefinitely the water supply is expensive, particularly in the actual context of climate evolution, economic crisis and increased energy costs. Increasing supply puts natural surroundings at risk when humans confuse a response to essential needs with the pillage of hydrological riches. We can no longer accept to continue to spend more money on producing water that we then waste and dirty. We must say it again loudly and clearly, as we did in Istanbul: The time of easy water is over. Today, it is up to Humankind to build bridges, bridges that are as many sustainable, useful and federating solutions. Bridges that bring the shores of knowledge, law, money and governance closer together. This is all possible if only political leaders and all of civil society mobilizes itself and speaks with one single voice that echoes throughout the world to ensure good quality water in the long term for future generations. And beyond theories and discourse, to concretely implement the right to access to water and sanitation as a right that is integral to respect for human dignity. The 5th World Water Forum, by gathering intelligence, cultures and hearts, brought its stone to the edifice. It contributed to spreading these ideas and to bringing people together so that the house of water may be built in tolerance and solidarity. With Turkey, with the entire international community, the World Water Council will continue to promote this cause. Loïc Fauchon President of the World Water Council 05
  • 5. 06
  • 6. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 A GROUNDBREAKING EVENT For many reasons, 2009 will be a turning point in human history. At the dawn of a new era, the 5th World Water Forum marked the rise of a new paradigm, a turning from the production-oriented to the eco-oriented, where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. The 5th World Water Forum was in many ways a groundbreaking event, featuring: ■ Approximately 16 000 engaged participants and over 30 000 total participants including those in the Fair/Expo: representatives of national and local governments, UN agencies, intergovernmental organizations, civil society, academia, water operators, business & industry, indigenous groups, youth, and the media; ■ Active participation of people from 182 countries; ■ 1 300 political process participants: 165 delegations, 90 ministers and 19 undersecretaries, over 250 parliamentarians, over 300 mayors and local officials; ■ 106 thematic sessions prepared by more than 400 organizations; ■ 5 high level panels; ■ 7 regional processes; 07 ■ 1000 press representatives producing 2000 international articles/features.
  • 7. A GROUNDBREAKING EVENT > Parliamentarians agreed upon the T he 5 th World Water Forum succeeded in gauging the com- establishment of a permanent interna- mitments of political leaders tional Parliamentary “Helpdesk” to to take up action on water: aid political cooperation on water legislation and its implementation. > Ministers adopted the Ministerial It will serve to: Statement. A Water Guide, was also drafted during the preparatory process • Coordinate: Guide responsibility to address the global challenges related for enacting water and sanitation to water within the context of sustai- laws; nable development and global changes. • Showcase: Share best global It includes commitments, for example, practices and water-related to intensify efforts to achieve MDG legislation; targets, implement IWRM and infor- • Respond: Quickly answer urgent mation sharing at the river-basin level questions; and prevent and respond to water- • Link: Unite all parties related disasters. in a globally cooperative inter-Parliamentarian network. > A number of Mayors signed the Opening of the Thematic Sessions. Istanbul Water Consensus (IWC), > Heads of State from a select number a new compact for Local and Regional of countries launched a broad-based Authorities committed to adapting Appeal for Action, which seeks to their water infrastructure and services promote water security, climate to the emerging challenges they are adaptability and international solidarity facing, such as climate change, rapid through a more strategic use of the urban growth, depletion and pollution world’s most precious resource, water. of water resources or aging infrastruc- ture. The 58 signatories of the IWC Other important achievements commited to prepare action plans to included highlighting key issues analyse and cope with these challenges. on the global water agenda that Ten major cities will continue to build require a multi-stakeholder response. on the momentum generated thus far These were addressed through a on specific issues, in their special role number of High Level Panels: as “champion cities” for the IWC. > Environment Ministers and leaders from intergovernmental organisations, local government and civil society, representing different perspectives, expressed their common desire for the climate and water families to work more closely together. A Ministerial Action Plan will carry the Forum’s messages on water and climate change into the UNFCCC process and COP-15 discussions. > In light of the recent financial crisis, decision-makers on the High Level Panel on Finance provided options on how to increase the overall funding for the water sector, at a time of increasing social, economic and environmental World Water Development Report Launch. challenges. The panel recommended 08 that investment in water infrastructure
  • 8. be included in the fiscal stimulus message emerged that water is the packages currently being developed medium through which climate to address the economic crisis. change acts. Participants recommended working on “hotspots” and channelling > The High-Level Expert Panel on the 5th World Water Forum outcomes Water and Disaster identified six into the UNFCCC CoP15 process, as specific priorities and 40 action guide- well as other international processes. lines to prevent, prepare for, manage and recover from water-related disasters. These are presented in Water and Disaster, the report of the Panel that was launched and debated at the Forum. Panellists called on the governments of all nations to endorse and adopt those measures immediately. > The Forum brought together representatives from the water, agri- culture and energy sectors to reflect upon humankind’s rising demands for food and energy, which are depleting our water supplies. Recognising the underdeveloped understanding of the water, food and energy nexus, panellists expressed their desire to continue Opening of the Thematic Sessions. working with the World Water Council to develop further guidance for more coordinated management in this domain. > Forum participants agreed that river basin organizations offer a vehicle > The 3rd UN World Water Development through which a range of partners can Report, released during the Forum work together. They recommended week, made it clear that targets to that IWRM be practiced at different provide access to safe sanitation are scales to be helpful in allocating water not being met. Panellists set out the appropriately. Strong action was daunting challenges of megacities and recommended to follow-up with the pollution in industrialized areas and implementation of IWRM. coastal zones. They urged development agencies to move beyond the traditional > A wide majority of stakeholders paradigm of water-borne sewage reaffirmed support for the right to and flush toilets to explore creative water and sanitation and supported approaches that employ diverse, further efforts for its implementation. appropriate technology and policies. Participants defined 10 priority issues for catalyzing institutional change Hundreds of organisations and and policies. In an effort to address thousands of participants joined the corruption issues, participants called conversation around the six leading for the creation of an international themes of the Forum: tribunal to address violations and launched an appeal to incorporate > Participants at the 5th World Water anti-corruption safeguards into project Forum concluded that good adaptation designs. measures for climate change and disasters are critical. To do so, more work is needed to continue to dovetail efforts before crises arise. A clear 09
  • 9. A GROUNDBREAKING EVENT Children's Forum... > Forum participants recognised that water should still be requested in were recognized as powerful agents financing needs for the water sector national budgets, increased efficiency for change in this domain, especially are still enormous and remain a major and greater innovation can actually in the advent of new technologies that constraint for further development. reduce financing needs. will improve interconnectedness in They agreed that funds need to be future water management strategies. allocated where they can have the > With a view to strengthening science Partners also committed to improve biggest impact and require support and education, participants drafted the organization and availability of from both the public and private guiding principles for water education, water-related data, building upon sector. Participants also recognised knowledge and capacity development. existing systems. that although a higher priority for Both youth and network associations 10
  • 10. Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, Prince of Orange and Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan at the opening Ceremony. Seven Regional Preparatory Processes, cipants committed to organize regional be even more important to open up culminating in panel presentations and preparatory fora in the future to support dialogues and bring stakeholders other activities at the 5th World Water continued progress on water issues in together to compare notes, learn from Forum, provided rich contributions local contexts. each other and agree upon a common to both the political and thematic way forward. ■ outcomes of the Forum. These processes Despite the general economic crisis, were important catalysts for mobilizing the attendance of the 5th World Water stakeholders, promoting cooperation Forum in record numbers clearly showed and impacting political decision-making how water issues are gaining political in their regions. Organisers and parti- momentum. In the near future, it will 11
  • 11. 12 © Photo: Angela Sevin. ADAPTING TO
  • 12. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 CLIMATE CHANGE: THE TIME IS NOW Rising global temperatures are changing our climate and affecting our water. The signs are all there-extreme weather events, rising sea levels, increasing floods, melting glaciers and severe droughts throughout the world. W “ e are all responsible,” According to the 4th Assessment existing pressures on water resources, Loïc Fauchon, President Report of the Intergovernmental Panel such as population growth, land-use of the World Water on Climate Change (IPCC), the links change and changes in consumption Council, told participants between water and climate change are patterns. attending the 5th World Water Forum. undeniable, with water predicted to be “Responsible for the current climate the primary medium through which changes, responsible for the tensions early climate change impacts will which reduce the availability of fresh- be felt by people, ecosystems and water that is indispensable to the survival economies. Moreover, these climate of humanity.” change impacts will compound other 13
  • 13. ADAPTING TO CLIMATE CHANGE: THE TIME IS NOW “We are all responsible--responsible for the current climate changes, responsible for the tensions which reduce the availability of freshwater that is indispensable to the survival of humanity.” Loïc Fauchon, President of the World Water Council. In Istanbul, climate change was evoked When the international community in every theme at the Forum, from gathers in Copenhagen in December how it will impact the achievement of 2009 to formulate a new global climate the MDGs, to how management, deal, adaptation and the role of water governance and financing strategies should form a central part of the should deal with its effects or how agenda. This was one of the main emerging technologies might help recommendations emanating from the anticipate consequences. To prepare 5th World Water Forum. for climate change and withstand the shocks of a changing planet, the world Bridging the mitigation-adaptation will need to adapt and put more resilient divide water management systems in place. Where energy production and use While much of the climate change stand at the centre of climate change discussion has typically been centred mitigation, water abstraction and use on mitigation measures, i.e. reduction will be key to adapting to climate of greenhouse gas emissions, particularly change. Climate adaptation thus through reducing energy use and translates, to a large extent, into water switching to cleaner energy sources, adaptation. now, the international community is increasingly turning its attention to adaptation measures. “While there is scientific consensus that we need to prevent emissions of greenhouse gases,” said Lindiwe Benedicta Hendricks, South Africa’s Minister of Water Affairs and Forestry, during the High-Level Panel on Climate Change, “we have to do both, mitigation and adaptation, to respond © Photo: Georgie & John Sharp - Port Augusta South Australia. to the challenges.” Hendricks and many others stressed that mitigation does not have to come at the expense of adaptation, or vice versa; they are, in fact, two sides of the same coin. 14
  • 14. “Preparedness is needed for a new and dynamic climate, instead of the climate we’re used to,” added Mark Smith, Head of IUCN’s Water Programme and a World Water Council Governor. © Photo: Angela Sevin. “Because of the expected impacts of climate change on water, adaptation of the way water is managed and the infrastructure used to store and drain water and deliver water services is a high priority.” Areas more vulnerable to the impacts reports and sessions, a panel dialogue of climate change-such as small islands, on regional perspectives on water, arid zones, low-lying, densely populated adaptation and climate offered the coasts and river deltas, and mountain opportunity to compare and contrast areas affected by glacier melt-should climate change issues and approaches be identified and protected. “It is between each of the regions, which, important to focus on these hotspots,” in the end, fit together like puzzle noted Henk van Schaik of the Co-ope- pieces to form a global picture of rative Programme on Water and climate change challenges in the Climate (CPWC) and Coordinator of world. the 5th World Water Forum’s climate change topic. “These areas should be the priority areas for national, regional and international adaptation policies and investments.” Indeed, nearly all of the Forum’s seven regional processes highlighted climate change as a priority issue for their region, and one that needs to be discussed in the context of regional specificities. In addition to focusing on climate change in each of the regional 15
  • 15. ADAPTING TO CLIMATE CHANGE: THE TIME IS NOW Show me the money! Generating Political Momentum But what sources of funding can be In light of so much uncertainty, utilised to implement adaptation it is often difficult to convince measures, especially considering the decision-makers to act. “Inaction is current global financial crisis? This not an option,” stressed William question was raised in discussions Cosgrove, a former president of the throughout the Forum. World Water Council and current Content Coordinator of the recently According to studies by the secretariat launched Third World Water Deve- of the United Nations Framework lopment Report (WWDR-3). Convention on Climate Change “Do not wait for things to happen, act (UNFCCC) and others, the additional now while preparing for an uncertain investment and financial flows needed future. Leaders in the water domain to adapt to climate change are likely and decision makers outside it must to amount to tens of billions of dollars work together to address adaptation.” annually for the coming decades. Some estimate that adaptation costs If the 5 th World Water Forum is Lindiwe Benedicta Hendricks, South Africa’s could be as much as US$530 billion any indication, decision-makers, are, Minister of Water Affairs and Forestry. from now until 2030. At present, the indeed, aware of the importance of Global Environmental Facility (GEF) climate change on the international offers the largest source of funding- agenda. Politicians at every level They emphasized that governments about US$180 million for adaptation addressed climate change during should work to identify and establish projects. The World Bank is also the Forum. Heads of State specifically new financing mechanisms for adap- establishing a climate investment fund identified climate change as a force tation so that vulnerable communities, in which donors have recently pledged to contend with and called urgently especially in developing countries, over US$6 billion. for adaptation strategies. Ministers will have the resources and support developed their body of work around they need to protect themselves from the overarching theme of “Global the worst impacts of climate change. “Inaction is not an option. Changes”, including climate change. Do not wait for things Local and regional authorities called “Water plays a crucial role in adapta- to happen, act now while on national governments to anticipate tion,” concluded Tineke Huizinga, preparing for an uncertain climate change-related effects into Deputy Minister for Transport and future. Leaders in the the design of infrastructure at the local Water of the Netherlands and co-chair water domain and level. of the ministerial roundtable on water decision makers outside and climate change. “Without cross- Parliamentarians called on developed sectoral cooperation, we won’t be able it must work together countries to reduce their production to meet our goals for the future. to address adaptation.” of greenhouse gases and encouraged The water community needs to speak linking water to climate through the with one voice and agree on putting William Cosgrove, former president of the World Water Council Conference of the Parties (COP) adaptation on national agendas at and current Content Coordinator of the Third World Water process. Copenhagen.” Development Report (WWRD-3). Government representatives taking part But even if funding becomes available, in a ministerial roundtable discussion some participants asked how these at the Forum on bridging the water lending institutions and government and climate agendas also came to aid programmes will ensure that agreement on the increasing importance the adaptation funds are used most of adaptation. In order for countries effectively. How should these funds be to become more “climate proof”, they channeled so that they can reach those highlighted the need to further most in need? Which proposals are enhance scientific knowledge, coope- most likely to generate an adequate ration, monitoring and early warning 16 and predictable flow of funds? capacities.
  • 16. From Istanbul to Copenhagen A major opportunity for the water and climate communities to come together will be at the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December 2009. It is here that the water and adaptation issue can and should be raised, according to a general consensus reached at the 5th World Water Forum “Without cross-sectoral in Istanbul. “Adaptation must be an cooperation, we won’t integral part of the global deal that will succeed the Kyoto Protocol,” be able to meet our goals emphasized Ger Bergkamp, Director for the future. General of the World Water Council. The water community “The time has come to integrate the needs to speak with adaptation and mitigation agendas. one voice and agree A coordinated focus on water will on putting adaptation Tineke Huizinga, Deputy Minister for Transport and Water of the Netherlands. bridge the old climate change divides, on national agendas empower people to reduce their vulnerability, and strengthen national at Copenhagen.” resilience both now and during the Tineke Huizinga, Deputy Minister for Transport tumultuous years ahead.” ■ and Water of the Netherlands. High-Level Panel on Water and Climate Change. Perspectives on Water and Climate Change Adaptation - New Publication Series. CPWC has coordinated the production of 16 papers on Water and Climate Change Adaptation, produced together with the World Water Council, IUCN and IWA. The perspectives offer various thematic, geographical and sectoral points of view on water and climate change adaptation. All Perspective Papers, together with the “Introduction, Summary and Key Messages” document, can be found in English, Spanish and French at: http://www.waterandclimate.org/index.php?id=5thWorldWaterForumpublications810 In addition to these 17 digital documents, a synthesis document, “Towards a Framework for Climate Proofing”, is also available in printed form. 17
  • 17. 18 © Photo: SEM.
  • 18. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 BEFORE DISASTERS STRIKE Natural disasters can happen anywhere, at any time - from the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004 to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, from massive floods in Europe and earthquakes in China to Australia’s worst drought in 100 years. E ven as participants gathered at killed more than 235,000 people and the 5th World Water Forum in cost US$181 billion, according to Istanbul, an earthquake off reports released at the 5th World Water the small island nation of Forum. Tonga triggered a tsunami in the South Pacific. Fortunately, there were no Unfortunately, the trend shows no signs reports of injuries or coastal damage, of slowing down. Hydro-meteorological but inhabitants of a crowded urban disasters, contrary to geological ones, area outside Jakarta, Indonesia, were have become ever more devastating not so lucky when heavy rains caused in recent decades. And it is not unrea- a large dam to burst at 2:00 AM less sonable to conclude that an increasingly than one week after the Forum. Every crowded planet and climate change are year, hundreds of millions of people the culprits of this escalation. The toll are affected by natural disasters, causing in lives and livelihoods will only worsen fatalities and billions of dollars worth if the issue is not brought to the fore- of damage. In 2008 alone, 321 disasters front of the global agenda. 19
  • 19. BEFORE DISASTERS STRIKE During the 5th World Water Forum, structural measures, such as the are coupled with public awareness and stakeholders in the Asia-Pacific region traditional Japanese “soda mattress” enhanced legal frameworks and funding, were instrumental in calling attention method--a natural system of tree the results can be impressive. to these issues, as well they should. branches and rocks woven together to As reported in one of the Forum’s This region suffers most from water- protect against riverbank erosion in sessions, effective preparative measures related disasters, accounting for half the Mekong River. saved an estimated 650,000 ships and the world’s fatalities between 1980 4.15 million people from the disastrous and 2006 and 90% of the affected Disaster prevention starts with local effects of typhoons in 2008. populations. In a special focus session measures, stressed many participants. at the Forum, the Ministry of Water An important ingredient of those local High-level commitment required Resources of the People’s Republic of solutions, too often overlooked, is China and its partners provided advice recognizing that human activity often Given the increasing frequency of on emergency strategies to deal not increases vulnerability, while nature hydro-meteorological disasters, parti- only with extensive damage incurred itself is vital to reducing the impacts. cipants strongly urged governments to infrastructures during mega-disasters, In fact, natural buffer areas such to integrate water-related disaster but also the secondary threats of as lakes, wetlands and forests can relief into national development and repairing those structures without actually act as shields to help protect financial plans. They also actively causing further harm. At the other end from floods and to store precious promoted cooperation and data sharing of the spectrum, the Spanish Ministry resources. among countries to prevent further of Environment and Rural and Marine losses that result from these natural Affairs and its partners shared their Whether through conservation or tragedies. valuable experiences on how to cope cutting-edge modern technology, with the lack of water using drought disaster management requires an Those calls were transformed into risk management strategies. integrated approach that involves recommendations emanating from the stakeholders and different cross- Ministerial Roundtable on the subject, Reducing the risks sections of society. One of the major chaired by Japan and Portugal and messages emerging from discussions moderated by two UN bodies - Inter- “Disasters strike just when you have at the Forum argued that cooperation national Strategy for Disaster Reduction forgotten about them,” said Japanese through a “trialogue” of government, and the Convention to Combat Crown Prince Naruhito, who delivered society and science is crucial to Desertification (see text box). But the the keynote address at the 5th World manage water-related disasters better ministers even went a step further by Water Forum’s High-Level Expert and to bridge technical and capacity highlighting the need to integrate risk Panel on Water and Disasters. “That divides, especially in developing reduction strategies into climate is why prevention measures are so countries. In fact, when improvements change adaptation plans and to clarify important: we must act before disasters in structural and management systems everyone’s roles and responsibilities. strike.” “We must act before disasters strike.” Japanese Crown Prince Naruhito As pointed out during the 5th World Water Form’s sessions and panels, technology and the exchange of reliable data, especially hydrological and climatic data, are key to reducing and preventing loss from water-related disasters. This can range from high-tech, region-wide early warning systems and flood forecasting models to 20 relatively simple, innovative low-cost Keynote Address of Japanese Crown Prince Naruhito.
  • 20. • Provide early diagnosis, information, warning, and evacuation alert systems; • Integrate the reduction of disaster risk and climate change into development planning; • Improve disaster response; • Provide safe water and sanitation following disasters; • Employ cross-cutting initiatives to share water information across organizations, governments and regions. To implement these priorities, the report sets out 40 concrete actions at Abdullah Gül, President, Republic of Turkey and Han Seung-Soo, Prime Minister of South Korea. the local, national, regional and global levels for reducing the loss of life and Several countries also pledged to include political support and capacity livelihoods. For example, the Panel develop a specific action plan to development in disaster preparedness proposes that national governments address the issue of drought prevention and response. On the other hand, develop people-centered warning and management. major weaknesses still persist in systems and data collection tools addressing the root causes of disasters, linked to existing widespread “We need to recognize that technical such as land use and poverty. communication systems, such as cell solutions are not enough to face global phone networks. It also calls for the water challenges,” said Loïc Fauchon, Plan of action establishment of a global code of President of the World Water Council. conduct for post-disaster provision “We also need to recognize that many The Hashimoto Action Plan launched of water and sanitation to guide and actors at the local level have developed at the 4th World Water Forum of coordinate organizations in their capacities to improve preparedness Mexico in 2006 mentions the issue of actions. Reaching beyond the water and response to disasters. These actors water and disasters in its priorities. box, it also suggests that development need to be better integrated in the To stimulate the implementation of the banks convene regional seminars on local, regional and national plans.” Hyogo Framework for Action--a global how effective disaster planning can blueprint to substantially reduce disaster contribute to economic growth. losses by 2015--the UN Secretary- “We need to recognize General’s Advisory Board on Water that technical and Sanitation (UNSGAB) established a High Level Expert Panel on Water solutions are not and Disasters. This panel prepared and enough to face global launched a specific Action Plan on water challenges” Water and Disaster during the 5th World Water Forum (available for Loïc Fauchon, downloading from President of the World Water Council. www.waterforum.jp/eng/HLEP/doc/ Water_and_Disaster.pdf). During the High Level Expert Panel on Water and Disaster, Margareta The plan calls on UN agencies, regional Wahlström, UN Assistant Secretary- bodies, national governments and General for Disaster Risk Reduction, local authorities to: noted that her agency had received 90 country reports on disaster risk to date • Mobilize and take action before and that major areas of progress disaster strikes; 21
  • 21. BEFORE DISASTERS STRIKE The High-Level Expert Panel “We were asked to come up with participating in the roundtable discus- on Water and Disasters concrete measures to anticipate, sion. The Action Plan itself will be prevent and react to disasters,” said presented to the UN Secretary-General proposes that national Jerome Delli Priscoli, a senior advisor and to international agencies that governments develop on international water issues with the work on natural disaster issues. people-centered warning US Army Corps of Engineers and an systems and data collection Alternate Governor of the World “I believe we have the most useful tools linked to existing Water Council. “This is a new kind of updated guidelines for tackling water- widespread communication model, one that is tangible and helps related disasters,” said Han Seung-soo, systems, such as cell phone people understand what’s happening Prime Minister of South Korea and so they can react.” Founding Chair of the Expert Panel. networks. “My hope is that the action plan will Many of the recommendations in the build bridges in global efforts in Action Plan, related to disasters management of water-related disasters.” involving both too much and too little ■ water, were espoused by the ministers MINISTERIAL COMMITMENTS SOME MINISTERIAL ROUNDTABLE ON WATER-RELATED DISASTERS RECOMMENDATIONS > We resolve to work and respond to natural > Risk reduction and mitigation strategies should and human-induced disasters, including be integrated into national development and floods and droughts. financial plans. In addition to mitigation measures, climate change adaptation measures > We resolve to proceed, where possible, should be implemented. from crisis management to disaster preparedness and prevention of human- > National legal frameworks on water-related induced disasters and risk management disasters should be clarified so that the by developing early warning systems, responsibilities and roles of he stakeholders implementing structural and non-structural can be identified. measures, both for water resources and access to water and sanitation, and building > International cooperation on risks associated capacity at all levels. with water-related disasters should be enhanced. > We resolve to take necessary post-disaster > Measures should be taken in order to increase mitigation and rehabilitation measures for public awareness and training programmes affected people and hydrological systems. should be developed and implemented. Best practices and experiences based on > We still strive to improve water-related scientific knowledge should be exchanged monitoring systems and ensure that useful among countries. Information sharing for information is made freely available to all decision-making processes and utilizing concerned populations. a combination of existing and emerging technologies to cope with water-related disasters should be promoted. 22
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  • 23. High Level Panel on Water, Food and Energy. THE WATER, FOOD AND ENERGY NEXUS: BREAKING NEW GROUND 24
  • 24. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 Discussions during the 5th World Water Forum focused on “water and energy” and “water and food” issues in parallel. Nonetheless, participants in both domains drew the same conclusion: More integrated policies and a further focus on multi-functional uses of water are needed to address the increasing competition for water from the agriculture and energy sectors. Speakers emphasized that the inter-linkage between water, food and energy could be turned into a win-win situation, rather than a competitive one. 25
  • 25. THE WATER, FOOD AND ENERGY NEXUS: BREAKING NEW GROUND Alexandre Müller, Assitant Director General, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN and Ger Bergkamp, Director General, World Water Council. R ecognition of this intercon- Food (and Energy) for Thought nection was also emphasized in regional discussions at “We have a patchwork of information the 5th World Water Forum, available. From this we need to develop for example, in the “Message of Foz a more coherent view on the interac- do Iguassu”, a product of the preparatory tions between water and energy and process for the Americas, which called water and food,” said Ger Bergkamp, for ”the multiple use of water on an Director General of the World Water efficient and rational basis.” Council during the High Level Expert Panel on Water, Food and Energy. The production and supply of food “Once we map out the relationships, and energy are increasingly inter-linked, we can see the challenges and start to and both depend on a vulne- move towards solutions.” rable resource: water. A minimum of Against the backdrop of At the very least, we already know 2,500 litres of water wildly fluctuating energy that, often, the same people lack both access to energy and to water services is needed to feed and food prices and moun- and subsist on less than US$1.25 a ting concern over pressure a person for one day, on renewable natural day, according to the Third World which is the same resources, speakers and Water Development Report. So far, global agricultural food production amount used participants at the 5th World has kept pace with population growth, Water Forum began to to produce just one clarify the interdependencies or nearly. However, 900 million people litre of bio-fuel. between water, food and remain undernourished, rural migrants energy and to define the are leaving farms for cities, and by Mohammed Ait-Kadi, President of the General contours of a new vision 2030, the demand for food crops Council of Agricultural Development in Morocco. in developing countries will have around the production and supply of food and energy, increased by 67%, further straining within water boundaries. already overtapped water resources. Undeniably, participants were striving 26 not to remain inside the “water box.”
  • 26. WWF-Turkey CEO Filiz Demirayak Of course, the water-food-energy He noted that the footprinting concept said it is time to change our perception nexus could not be discussed without had gained popularity in a variety of of water and water use practices consi- evoking bio-fuels. Energy crops are sectors, but: “we are in the very early derably. We are facing an ecological currently providing farmers with new stages of understanding the water foot- credit crunch. “The level of urgency opportunities to improve their liveli- print in the energy sector, and there to take action on water issues is at hoods, but are sometimes perceived as have been some quite irresponsible the critical stage. According to WWF’s draining precious resources away from recent statements, which are far from Living Planet Index, we have already food production. Alexander Müller, having a sound scientific basis”. exceeded natural resources’ reproductive Assistant Director General, Food and Taylor concluded by calling for capacity by 30%,” she said. Agriculture Organization of the UN, governments and academia to advance said it is “absolutely necessary” to understanding in this area. A Focus on Farming manage the links between energy and food production” He pointed out that a With agriculture constituting 70% of minimum of 2,500 litres of water is total water use, rising food prices needed to feed a person for one day, “Water security could spark the beginning of strategies which is the same amount used to is the gossamer for better resource management. produce just one litre of bio-fuel. Anders Berntell, Executive Director Some argued that striking a balance that links the web of the Stockholm International Water between bio-energy and food production of energy, food, Institute, noted that when there is possible using smarter technology environmental is competition for a resource, the first within a framework of sustainable step is to manage demand. He chal- development, while others dismissed sustainability and lenged participants to address water the possibility of reconciling the two. human security”. efficiency in agricultural production and to reduce inefficiency in the entire David Andrews, Senior Advisor to the Mohammed Ait-Kadi, President of the General food chain, as 50% of food is wasted President of the 63rd Session of the Council of Agricultural Development in Morocco. between farm and fork. To do so will UN General Assembly on Food Policy require closer examination of water and Sustainable Development, agreed footprints, in addition to international that solutions do exist. “We must A variety of concrete proposals were trade patterns. change the way we look at agriculture made to facilitate interactions within and move from a productionist view, the water-food-energy nexus, from But farmers might not be that interested which is narrow and works in silos, to operating dams in ways that release in more crop per drop; they are a more holistic and ecological point river currents through energy turbines, more concerned about income per of view,” he recommended. but store the water in aquifers or drop. “This is about livelihoods,” floodplains, to using better metering commented Rodney Cooke, Director Water Multi-Tasking and pricing structures to improve of the Technical Advisory Division for efficiency and lower demand across the International Fund for Agriculture In addressing the interrelations between the food and energy sectors. (IFAD). “We have learned that farmers water and energy production, Richard must be at the centre of water mana- Taylor, Executive Director of the Others argued that one way to create gement initiatives. Farmers are the International Hydropower Association, greater cohesion among water, food gatekeepers of our natural resources.” noted that “There is a vital role for and energy policies would be to deal hydropower within modern, smarter with water and energy within the same However, farmers can spur rural deve- power systems, but not one technology ministry. “Countries need one national lopment only if they have access to is a panacea - cleaner energy techno- plan for energy and water,” stressed credit and markets. “In Africa, there logies need to be better integrated for Milagros Couchoud Gregory, Director is a strong need for investment in more sustainable solutions. Joined-up General for Spain’s National Meteo- agriculture, which is linked to invest- policy on water and energy is not rological Institute and a World Water ment in water mobilization,” stated as advanced as it should be, and Council Alternate Governor. Aly Abou-Sabaa, Director of the sustainability assessment tools could Agriculture and Agro-industry Depar- assist in this matter.” He added that tment for the African Development estimations of water footprints for Bank. all energy technologies are currently quite primitive and misleading. 27
  • 27. THE WATER, FOOD AND ENERGY NEXUS: BREAKING NEW GROUND Anders Berntell, Executive Director, Stockholm International Water Institute and Filiz Demirayak, WWF-Turkey CEO. The issue is not to take an energy view Recognizing that the dialogue had or an agricultural view, advised only just begun, Ait-Kadi further Mohammed Ait-Kadi President of the called on the World Water Council to General Council of Agricultural launch a multi-stakeholder platform Development of Morocco. “Water to continue to discuss water, food and security is the gossamer that links the energy linkages and create recom- web of energy, food, environmental mendations on how to dovetail efforts. sustainability and human security,” The resulting product could resemble he said. the report drafted by the Intergovern- mental Panel on Climate Change and Colin Chartres, Director General of assist high-level decision makers at the the International Water Management G8 or G20 in making sound policy Institute, has also observed this paradigm choices. ■ shift in a number of countries. “Water is no long an issue [just] for engineers and scientists. It has become a more profound social and economic issue,” 28 he noted.
  • 28. MINISTERIAL COMMITMENTS In the Ministerial Statement adopted during the 5th these define sustainable water and energy World Water Forum, Ministers agreed to take action: resources at regional, national and sub-national levels.” It also recognized the “multiple benefits > “We support country-led development projects of multiple uses and functions of water services, in different sectors related to water, especially including for the most vulnerable users.” with regard to energy and food security and poverty eradication. While this sentiment was again echoed in the Ministerial Roundtable discussions, both on > “We will work to build new and maintain water for energy and on water for food, the strengthen and improve existing infrastructure participants of the discussion on Water and for multiple purposes, including water storage, Energy agreed that mechanisms and priorities irrigation, energy production, navigation and were needed to develop a better understanding disaster prevention and preparedness that are of the water and energy nexus and to improve economically sound, environmentally sustainable the coherence of water and energy policies. and socially equitable.” They called for a specific program on the interactions between water and energy and The Istanbul Water Guide annexed to the closer interaction between World Water Fora Ministerial Statement recognized that “It is and other international processes, in particular important to conduct national water and energy with the World Energy Fora. They also encouraged resource sustainability assessments considering the proposal of actions to increase water secu- agriculture and poverty aspects and through rity in case of volatile energy prices. WATER FOOTPRINTS A water footprint is a calculation of the water needed for the production of any product or service from start to finish. It takes: > 16 000 litres to produce 1 kilo of beef > 140 litres to produce 1 cup of coffee > 120 litres to produce 1 glass of wine > 23 000 litres to produce a leather bag > 900 litres to produce 1 kilo of corn > 3000 litres to produce 1 kilo of rice > 1000 litres to produce 1 litre of milk > 1350 litres to produce 1 kilo of wheat Session Voltage and Volume: Can water and energy policies work hand in hand? 29
  • 29. 30 © Photo: Water For People - Abraham Aruquipa.
  • 30. 2015 IS Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 AROUND THE CORNER! ARE WE PREPARED? A ccording to the third World In developing countries, 80% of health major United Nations conferences Water Development Report, problems are linked to inadequate and summits, world leaders adopted the link between poverty water and sanitation, claiming the the United Nations’ Millennium and water is clear: the lives of 5 million people per year, 1.8 Declaration, which set out to reduce number of people living on less than million of whom are children. Over extreme poverty by establishing a series US$ 1.25 a day roughly coincides the past five years, diarrhea has killed of time- bound targets known as the with the location and number of those more children than all the people lost Millennium Development Goals without access to safe drinking water. in armed conflicts since World War II. (MDGs). Water and sanitation are A closer look at the numbers paints a In Africa alone, an estimated 5% of central pillars, but beyond the specific devastating portrait of a humanitarian GDP is lost annually due to illness and water and sanitation targets, water is disaster. Nearly 1 billion people do not death caused by dirty water and poor also instrumental in attaining other have guaranteed access to water and sanitation. MDGs, from reducing poverty, hunger more than 2.6 billion are without basic and child mortality, to improving sanitation. In 2000, building upon a decade of school attendance, especially for girls. 31
  • 31. 2015 IS AROUND THE CORNER! ARE WE PREPARED? Speakers and participants at the 5th World of a global fund for water and health. Water Forum acknowledged that mee- ting the water and sanitation targets But money alone will not be enough. is a precondition for making progress Political will, good governance, sound on all other Millennium Development institutions and skilled labour will be Goals. needed at all levels to better health, encourage economic development, In the UN’s 2008 MDG Report, Sha enable populations to regain human Zukang, Under-Secretary-General for dignity, and reduce environmental Economic and Social Affairs, reported impacts. Moreover, policy-making that since 1990, progress had been and planning must become more made and 1.6 billion people had gained interlinked across health, agriculture, access to safe drinking water. However, energy and water sectors. “We cannot almost half the developing world’s population still lives without improved sanitation. While the MDGs are critical in directing international efforts towards the same end goal, they have not yet brought us far enough to reach the desired targets before the 2015 deadline. What Remedies in Sight? Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Director General of the World Health Organization and Chair of the World Commission of Environment and Development, known as the “Brundtland Commission”, observed that half of High Level Panel on Sanitation. the world’s hospital beds are occupied by children and adults suffering from [continue to] think sectorally,” said water-related diseases. Speaking at the Pasquale Steduto, Chair of UN Water. closing ceremony of the 5th World Water Forum, she noted: “This huge One way to support further achievement economic burden could be avoided of the MDGs could be through the but our progress is not promising. Global Framework for Action (GF4A) We need more efforts to energize on water and sanitation. This initiative policymakers and to work with all aims to facilitate concerted measures stakeholders in concerted action.” at national and interna- tional levels to improve Many billions of dollars will be needed national planning pro- Half of the world’s over the next six years to meet the cesses, enhance aid hospital beds are MDG targets for safe drinking water effectiveness, increase occupied by children and sanitation alone. “Financing is the investments and tackle key to achieving the MDGs”, says Ben capacity constraints. and adults suffering Braga, Director of the National Water It seeks to build mutual from water-related Agency of Brazil and Vice-President accountability between of the World Water Council. “We must national governments diseases. establish innovative financing mecha- and development part- nisms to allow the transfer of capital ners to deliver results to the sector. and technology from North to South,” Participants at the Forum called upon he urged. One such mechanism could global leaders to firmly commit to the 32 be the establishment by the G8 or G20 implementation of the Global Frame-
  • 32. work. Critics, however, called the lack 0.3% of global GDP. of progress on the initiative a failure The Water Supply & Sanitation Colla- of donor and developing country borative Council (WSSCC) considers governments to provide the money and that the world could meet the MDG political will needed to move forward. sanitation target with about US$10 billion annually, using existing, proven Sanitation is Lagging Behind approaches and tech- nologies. To do so, ho- The 2008 International Year of Sanitation wever, will require a “… Sanitation has helped to generate some progress significant change in [should be turned] on delivering on the sanitation target the prominence given and has created further recognition of to sanitation. According from a minor, neglected, the importance of sanitation. However, to Jon Lane, WSSCC subsidy-driven, charitable at current rates of progress, the MDG Executive Director: activity into a major, water target will not be met in sub- “The next challenge Saharan Africa until the 22nd century! for sanitation is for all prominent, demand-driven, This is in many ways astounding, most stakeholders to work vibrant market-driven remarkably because investing in to turn sanitation from sanitation makes sense. The World a minor, neglected, human activity.” Health Organization estimates that a subsidy-driven, chari- Jon Lane, WSSCC one-dollar investment in sanitation table activity into a improvements can save anywhere major, prominent, demand-driven, vi- from US$3 to US$34 in other expenses brant market-driven human acti- like medical costs, lost productivity vity.” and saved time. Yet, investment in sanitation rarely amounts to more than However, sanitation is not only a © Photo: Angela Sevin. 33
  • 33. 2015 IS AROUND THE CORNER! ARE WE PREPARED? question of latrines. It is also very potential channeled in the right direction, much a matter of urban planning, supporting development objectives.” treatment facilities in mega-cities While achieving the MDGs is a noble and preservation of coastal zones, as objective, some participants remarked argued during the High Level Expert that when reached, the MDGs will Panel on Sanitation. Regardless of only have helped out half of those scale, Guy Fradin, Chief Executive in need. “Indeed, some progress has Officer, French Agence de l’Eau been made on the MDGs,” said Pascal Seine-Normandie, and a Governor of Steduto. “Post-2015, at least another the World Water Council concurs: half of the world population will “We must continue to make sanitation need safe drinking water and sanitation.” sexy to mobilize political will. To do That moment will come before we this, we must continue to talk about realise it. ■ the benefits of sanitation for dignity, human health and the environment,” he said. “Post-2015, at least another half of During the Forum, a special session focused on sanitation, health and the world population dignity, and their implications for gender will need safe drinking equity. Women and girls traditionally water and sanitation.” bear the water and sanitation burden. They are responsible for fetching and Pasquale Steduto, UN Water. storing water and caring for family members who fall ill due to water- related diseases. This and the lack of sanitation facilities keep many girls out of school and subjects them to violence. Participants made several recommendations to improve gender equity in the water sector, including increased investment in sanitation. Also, the collection of gender disag- gregated data to measure the real gender-specific impact of water and sanitation in projects and programmes would contribute to improving the situation. In addition, participants urged for greater involvement of Ben Braga, Director of the National Water Agency of Brazil and Vice-President women in decision-making roles, of the World Water Council. which would naturally result in the development of more gender-friendly national policies. Is the glass half-full or half-empty? “Achieving and sustaining the higher levels of water security needed to meet the MDGs will be made more difficult by the many emerging challenges,” said Letitia Obeng, Chair, Global Water Partnership. “Water is too precious a resource to be left unmanaged. Its 34 power needs to be harnessed and its Guy Fradin, French Agence de l’eau Seine-Normandie and Klaus Töpfer, Forum Ambassador.
  • 34. A CALL FOR ACTION The 5th World Water Forum’s political processes recognized the MDGs as a priority at every level. © Photo: Water For People. > The MDGs were explicitly mentioned in the Appeal of the Heads of States who met in Istanbul. > Ministers promised to “intensify our efforts to reach internationally agreed upon goals such as the MDGs.” They also called for increased investments to reach the MDGs, Halve, by 2015, especially in Africa. the proportion of the population > Participants at the Ministerial round- without sustainable access table discussions on sanitation pledged to safe drinking water and to maintain the momentum generated by the International Year of Sanitation. basic sanitation. They also committed to mobilize additional resources to address the delay in meeting the MDG sanitation -MDG7, Target 10 target. A strong consensus was reached that the Right to Water and Sanitation is crucial to advance a wide range of MDGs. > Local and regional authorities recognized the importance of making progress towards the MDG sanitation target in the Istanbul Water Consensus, where they acknowledged: “Sanitation is equally important as water supply and needs to be given due consideration on the political agenda of local, regional and national governments.” > Parliamentarians called for a new initiative in which 1% of the national water budgets of developed countries would be used for water and sanitation programmes to reach the MDGs in developing and under-developed countries. Session Keeping Sanitation High on the Agenda. 35
  • 35. 36 © Photo: James Dale.
  • 36. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 WEATHERING A “PERFECT STORM” While its negative impact has been seismic, the global economic crisis has also created unprecedented opportunities for restructuring and reform, for those countries with the means and determination to seize them. I n the past, for example, the stock The unfolding global financial and impact on the water sector during the market crash at the beginning economic turmoil has combined with 5th World Water Forum. “The water of the last century actually the food, energy and water crises to stir sector is under-funded and this could provoked greater investment up an unprecedented “perfect storm” become worse,” he added. “Public in utilities such as water, since it was that is applying enormous pressure on funding for infrastructure projects world- seen as an unmistakeable value due developing economies, observed Jamal wide is constrained. And the water to its necessity. As Rahm Emanuel, Saghir, Director of the Energy, Transport sector does not have a good track US President Barack Obama’s and Water Department at the World record of advocating its case with Chief of Staff, put it, “never waste Bank, in a technical experts session finance ministers. The situation with a crisis.” focusing on the financial crisis and its private investment flows is even worse.” 37
  • 37. WEATHERING A “PERFECT STORM” are under stress, many observed, investing in water development has be- come even more critical, if only because the plight of those without access to water and sanitation is all the more devastating in difficult times. “During these times of financial crisis, we cannot lose sight of the fundamental economic importance of water for life and commerce,” said Julia Marton- Lefèvre, Director General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). “Adequate financing is a major challenge for meeting the Millennium Develop- ment Goals (MDG) water and sanitation Angel Gurria, Secretary-General of the OECD and Mehmet Simsek, Minister of Economy of Turkey. targets,” explained Sha Zukang, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for “The water sector Spotlighting Financing Economic and Social Affairs, in the at the Forum High-Level Expert Panel discussion. is under-funded and “Yet, in the midst of the current global this could become In Istanbul, with 11 packed sessions financial and economic crisis, it is as worse.” dedicated to financing issues, a High- important as ever that we keep these Level Expert Panel, a technical panel priorities clearly in sight. Cutting budgets Jamal Saghir, World Bank on the effects of the economic crisis for water and sanitation would be a on the water sector and a report relea- sed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) “Adequate financing is a on Overseas Development Assistance major challenge for meeting (ODA), financing and economic issues the Millennium Development at the 5th World Water Forum were in Goals water and sanitation the spotlight perhaps more than in any targets. Cutting budgets for other Forum. water and sanitation would be a serious mistake.” While financial resources are limited and banks and other financial institutions Jamal Saghir, World Bank Launching of the ODA report. 38
  • 38. “It is a moral imperative the crisis. Angel Gurría, Secretary- ongoing water infrastructure projects General of the OECD argued in several moving–at least through planning and that we continue sessions at the Forum that it is critical preparation stages-even if they may to provide investment for countries putting together stimulus not currently be bankable due to the plans to include specific provisions for crisis conditions. This will ensure that in water.” funding water projects. Such is the they can be initiated as soon as the Mehmet Şimşek, case in the EU, China, South Korea crisis ebbs. Minister of Economy of Turkey and the US, where the Obama Admi- nistration allocated over US$10 billion Another important priority: to increase serious mistake. It would not only of a total US$800 billion to water- efficiency of existing water and sani- undermine the MDG progress thus far, related projects at local and federal tation systems, both in investment and for which water serves as a key factor levels. Sierra agreed. “The challenge operations, to bring down costs. “Now to eradicate poverty, secure healthy here is to get the biggest bang for the is the time to look at the quality of lives and ensure environmental sustai- stimulus buck,” she said in the High- access to water and sanitation,” urged nability. It would also limit the resilience Level Expert Panel. Arjun Thapan, Director General of the of vulnerable populations to deal with Southeast Asia Department of the the economic downturn and its impacts.” The water community must, now Asian Development Bank, during the more than ever, keep the pressure high High-Level Expert Panel. “We don’t Indeed, representatives of the African on political leaders who control national, know how long the crisis will last. Regional Process placed the issue of regional and local budgets to increase In water and sanitation, we have made financing as one of their foremost or at least not to reduce allocations for enormous gains in Asia in the last concerns. An estimated US$50 billion water. Financing issues did catch the 6-10 years. These gains have to be per year in investments will be needed attention of political decision-makers sustained by focusing on governance to achieve the targets that have been at the 5th World Water Forum. Heads and efficiency.” He maintained that set for improving access to drinking of State attending the Forum urged these gains in efficiency would prove water and safe sanitation, agriculture, that the consequences of the recent to finance ministers that the cause was power generation and storage in economic and financial crisis be a worthy investment. Africa. Many developing economies evaluated urgently. Both Ministers and are in an especially difficult position. Parliamentarians stressed that adequate “The poorest are the victims of the budgets for water are essential. Ministers global shock,” said Katherine Sierra, pledged not only to mobilize and Vice President for Sustainable increase resources from both public Development at the World Bank. and private sources, in particular to achieve the MDGs, but also to ensure The central concern is that “the severe that they are used effectively. Finally, global economic crisis which has both Ministers and Local and Regional impacted practically every country in Authorities committed to promote and the world has created a new and implement realistic, sustainable and potentially devastating threat to the innovative financing strategies for the solutions we have been trying to put water sector, recognizing that social in place for so long,” warned Patrick and environmental aspects must also Cairo, Executive Vice President, be part of the equation. Local and Strategy and Marketing, Suez Envi- Regional Authorities went on to suggest Katherine Sierra, Vice President for Sustainable ronnement North America, in another that investment in the water sector Development at the World Bank. panel session. Concluded Mehmet be integrated into debt reduction Simsek, Minister of Economy of operations, such as exchange of debt Turkey: “It is a moral imperative that against water and sanitation investment. we continue to provide investment Parliamentarians also called for the in water.” establishment of a fund for development assistance, based on 1% of national What Remedies? water budgets. In a few economies, water development While money might not be available has been recognized as a priority amid tomorrow, a key task will be to keep 39
  • 39. WEATHERING A “PERFECT STORM” Public or Private Financing? about the conditions under which water services can be provided effec- The public-vs-private debate remained tively and efficiently, whether by highly charged at the 5th World Water public, private or a combination of Forum, inextricably linked to the players.” wider political and moral argument over whether access to water is a human A recent study by the World Bank of right and persistent worries about 65 Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) “commoditizing” water and the impact over the last 20 years indicated that in of putting a price on the provision of developing countries, private operators water services. expanded coverage and increased operational efficiency. But direct Rather than dwell on long-running investment from private sources was disputes, Forum participants took a less than expected and the penetration pragmatic approach by looking at of PPPs in the water sector remains practical steps to address the funding low. “The debate about public versus shortfall. Overall, Forum participants private utility provision has matured agreed that good and bad private substantially over the last decade, service providers exist, as do good and which was reflected in the very bad public service providers. The right constructive session on public–private solution for a given circumstance exists roles in utility service provision”, somewhere along a continuum balancing explained Paul Reiter, Executive the two. “In developing countries, there Director of the International Water is now a diverse set of private actors Association and a Governor of the and the debate has moved beyond World Water Council. “Part of this ‘public vs. private’,” argued Gurría evolution in thinking is the acknow- (OECD), which has extensively studied ledgement that all public utilities, water pricing and financing. “It is now which make up more than 90% of 40
  • 40. utilities worldwide, conduct their business through a combination of public and private resources. The question is therefore not a question about public versus private, akin to black or white, but rather a question of how utilities can and should optimize the mix of public and private resources in the “gray zone.” A Bright Future Nonetheless? Pricing can in fact be pro-poor, many participants in Istanbul maintained. When tariffs are low, Gurría noted, there is typically a heavy reliance on Paul Reiter, Executive Director of the International Water Association. taxes to finance water, which is not sustainable over the long term and usually results in inefficient and The sector too must stress the far- poorly funded services. “We got it reaching benefits of investment in wrong when we talked about full cost water development. “This crisis repre- recovery,” acknowledged Gurría in sents an opportunity to put more a session on pricing. “Now we say investment into the water sector and ‘sustainable cost recovery.’ Don’t put provides the cross-cutting benefits in too much pressure on taxes; that’s not health, education and poverty alle- going to happen. Do as much as you viation,” explained Jeremias Paul, can to cover costs with tariffs. It’s a Undersecretary of Finance of the sales job, a political job. It takes guts.” Philippines, in a panel discussion on the economic crisis. “The key problem essentially is that people who present water projects only do so from their “It was tough enough sectoral perspective.” before; with a crisis, it is tougher. We have The water community has to be more politically savvy, Gurría advised. He to try harder.” suggests that the water sector stress Angel Gurría, OECD how investment would provide a “double dividend”: stimulus for ailing economies and incalculable social benefits for the poorest people. “Envi- Rather than having no access to water ronment ministers and water people or limited access to low-quality water want to seduce the finance ministers. delivered by “sharks” that are out to But you also want to get the Prime gouge them, “the poor want, can and Ministers in there. prefer to pay,” the head of the OECD The question is how to tell the right concluded. “You cannot say that there story. It was tough enough before; is no social sensitivity in this analysis. with a crisis, it is tougher. We have to This is about how we can make it try harder.” ■ possible for water to be available to those who don’t have it today - and how we can protect the most vulnera- ble.” When all the debates are over, that will be the true bottom line. 41
  • 41. 42 © Photo: Tristan Nitot, Standblog.org
  • 42. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 THE GOVERNANCE CHALLENGE F or an entire day at the 5 th World Water Forum, Victor Ruffy, a longtime member of the Swiss Federal Assembly, presided over a conference that brought together more than 260 legislators from around 60 countries to discuss critical priorities in the water sector. Asked to explain the significance of the Parliamentarians’ Process, Ruffy indicated that essential points were evoked in the keynote address delivered by William Cosgrove, former president of the World Water Council and Content Coordinator of the 3rd World Water Development Report. “It was all about changing mindsets,” he remarked. “This was fundamental.” 43
  • 43. THE GOVERNANCE CHALLENGE Indeed, if the global priority is to The key to success in addressing water address water stress and all its related stress is good governance. In the challenges, such as climate change, statement adopted in Istanbul, Ministers sanitation and public health, lawmakers committed to improve governance at and government leaders have to be the national level through the promotion convinced that it is time to act. Why? of water management reform and by Simply because they are the people engaging all stakeholders in decision- who actually have the power to drive making processes. They also committed change, implement policies and enforce to strengthen the water sector laws the rules. In his speech, Cosgrove and regulatory frameworks, prevent spelled out the critical reasons why corruption, and increase transparency nations must put water and its access in decision-making processes, “With increasing water shortages, good governance more than ever is essential for water management,” declared “With increasing water Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General shortages, good governance of the United Nations Educational, more than ever is essential Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at the 5th World Water for water management.” Forum’s opening plenary session. Koïchiro Matsuura, UNESCO. In their statement, Ministers also acknowledged that good water and management at the very top of governance is a challenge because their political agendas. Detailing the “water is a cross-cutting issue.” They pressures of population growth and vowed to communicate the urgent the need to provide food, health and need for action to the highest political education to the world’s poorest people, levels. “We must have a follow-up,” Cosgrove stressed the need for coordi- Ruffy urged. “This would make nated action. “Make sure that when politicians more credible. If there is no legislation is brought to you that there follow-up, it would be catastrophic.” is consideration of what its impact will be on water,” he advised. “When the Ugandan legislator David Ebong time comes for considering budgets, agreed. “The biggest problem in make sure they reflect those priorities.” Africa today is governance,” he said at the end of the parliamentarians meeting. “The political and technical issues and priorities are clear. But without governance, it all falls apart.” The water sector and parliamentarians have to be engaged together, Ebong concluded, because legislatures provide oversight of spending and implementation. “We are the glue that brings everything together.” To help bolster good governance in the water sector, parliamentarians at the Forum agreed to create a “Water Legislation Helpdesk” to aid legislators across the globe with the development and implementation of water and sanitation legislation. By collating 44 data and information and identifying Mayors' meeting.
  • 44. best practices-which mechanisms or policies have succeeded and which have failed-this facility would provide valuable advice to lawmakers on how to draft legislation or improve existing rules and regulations. In Istanbul, more than 50 local and regional authorities also demonstrated their will to lead the way when they became the pilot signatories to the non-binding yet visionary Istanbul Water Consensus. This process was launched a year earlier and was perso- nally guided by the Mayor of Istanbul, Mayor Kadir Topbas. By agreeing to the landmark set of commitments, these cities and regions, which typically have the on-the-ground expertise in Michelle Vauzelle, president of the regional managing water and sanitation sys- council of Provence-Alpes-Cote-d'Azur tems, grasped “a unique opportunity to and regions “are the foremost actors and Jean-Claude Gaudin, Mayor of Marseilles. give original and concrete answers to in addressing the lack and unequal our problems,” said Loïc Fauchon, distribution of water.” President of the World Water Council, at the start of the conference of local “Local governments are capable of and regional authorities. “Municipalities playing a lead role in bringing water will take concrete measures that to people,” Stephen Kabuye, the concern citizens.” Mayor of Entebbe, added, explaining why his city was one of the first to sign That cities and regions are taking the lead the Consensus. “Local authorities in implementing a comprehensive and collaborating in this network cannot sustainable water actively work in agenda unders- isolation. cores their critical They need to frontline position. “The biggest problem strengthen each “Local and regional in Africa today other by working governments have is governance. together. Tangible a special responsi- and sustainable bility,” said Maged The political and results can be Abu Ramadan, technical issues and achieved through Mayor of Gaza cooperation at the and Chair, Asso- priorities are clear. local and regional ciation of Pales- But without levels.” tinian Local Au- governance, thorities, at a ses- Mayors, local sion that brought it all falls apart.” authorities and together parlia- regions “are the mentarians and David Ebong, Ugandan legislator. pillars of water local and regional g o v e r n a n c e ,” authorities. “They are the level of go- Fauchon remarked. “Nothing to do vernment that is closest to the people with water can be done without going and most responsible to their needs.” through the local and regional authori- Jean-Claude Gaudin, the Mayor of ties.” He continued: “Rapid urbanization Marseilles, went on to observe that cities and the growth of cities are increasing 45
  • 45. THE GOVERNANCE CHALLENGE Dialogue Local Authorities and Parliamentarians. “Many decisions the demand for clean water. Certain session between Ministers, Parliamen- cities are potential sanitary bombs. tarians and Local and Regional taken at all levels We should be careful that they do not Authorities attempted to bridge this of government both explode with disease and other da- divide at the Forum. Likewise, the risk mage. Our cities are the battlefields management discussions at the Forum influence and depend where this struggle will be won or lost.” stressed the need for discussion, not significantly on water. only among different levels of govern- Yet this connection A number of signatories of the ment, but between government, the Consensus will serve as champions or scientific community and civil society. is rarely recognized role models for others, helping to and much less acted recruit new subscribers by their example. A major challenge for all political upon.” “We will talk about best practices,” actors at every level will be to address explained Reinaldo Bautista, the the problem of corruption. Water is a Istanbul Declaration of Heads Mayor of Baguio City, at a press high-risk sector for graft, according to of States on Water. conference convened by the World Transparency International. The Water Water Council. “We hope to share this, Governance Facility (WGF) of the especially being the first in Southeast United Nations Development Pro- Asia.” Walter Kling, Administration gramme (UNDP) estimates that corrupt Manager of the City of Vienna, said: practices may siphon off as much as “We are prepared to contribute and to 30% from the public water sector promote the Istanbul Water Consensus. budgets every year, translating into It is really the work we will do in the a US$48 billion loss over the next next three years that will prove what a decade. In a thematic session on the champion city is.” issue, Håkan Tropp, Director of the WGF and Chair of the Water Integrity Cities and regions will have to colla- Network (WIN) stated that corruption borate with national governments and is the “missing link” in water gover- legislators to find fresh solutions to nance. “This is an area we didn’t dare water stress and achieve good water touch upon in the past. If we are going governance. The Heads of State to get serious we have to understand gathered at the Forum recognized that that the water crisis is a governance “Many decisions taken at all levels crisis. We must address the issues of of government both influence and integrity and corruption in the sector.” depend significantly on water. Yet this connection is rarely recognized and Adding escalating water stress to the 46 40 much less acted upon.” A trialogue ruinous effects of corruption, it becomes
  • 46. Jasper M. Tumuhimbise, National Coordinator of the Anti Corruption Parliaments for Water Meeting. Coalition Uganda (ACCU). evident that corruption has forced of legislation or regulation. While policymakers to a critical crossroads. policies matter, good governance will “Changes within the water sector to emerge if people demand it and fight promote water integrity will go a long for it-and if leaders respond. “People way to reduce corruption, but broader need to be empowered,” concluded changes will be needed to enable and Jasper M. Tumuhimbise, National provide incentives to stakeholders,” Coordinator of the Anti Corruption explained Tropp. Coalition Uganda (ACCU). After all, “water is a right.” ■ A major priority must be to confront the special challenges that women face in dealing with poorly run water and sanitation systems and corrupt prac- Corrupt practices may siphon tices. “Women are over-represented off as much as 30% from the public among the poor, and their capacity to water sector budgets every year, pay for water, their bargaining abilities and their capacity to negotiate corrupt translating into a US$48 billion water systems are highly dependent on loss over the next decade. power and gender relations in their cultures,” Caroline Toroitich of SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, Kenya, and a member of the Gender and Water Alliance, explained in one thematic session. “Even if women are not asked to pay extra, they are often subjected to sexual harassment or forced to provide sexual favours,” Toroitich added. “We must increase understanding on how powers of water control and access are gendered in legal and cultural ways.” Clearly, the water governance challenge facing policymakers and government leaders at all levels is complex and multifaceted. It is not just a matter Ministerial Conference - closing. 47 41
  • 47. 48 © Photo: Tim Meyer.
  • 48. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 BEYOND WATER WARS: PLEDGES FOR COOPERATION water is plentiful and to other areas Matsuura, Director-General of the T here are more than 263 transboundary river basins where it is in short supply. The United Nations Educational, Scientific around the world and message was clear: everyone must and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), hundreds of transboundary confront the challenge of water in the opening plenary session, which aquifers on which over 3 billion stress and scarcity together if lives, was attended by several government people depend. At the start of the especially those of the poorest, are leaders and senior representatives of session on transboundary waters to to be saved. international organizations. “It is only mark World Water Day, participants through an integrated approach involving watched “One Water”, the award- International solidarity is one of the all stakeholders across all sectors and winning documentary that celebrates most important ways of addressing the disciplines–not just science, but also water and the many ways in which global water crisis. Cooperation must education, culture and communication– it affects people’s lives. Filmed in 15 be comprehensive and coordinated. that we will find the solutions to the countries around the world, the film “Water cuts across all spheres of many water problems we face. The takes the audience to places where human life,” explained Koïchiro increasing worldwide pressures on 49
  • 49. BEYOND WATER WARS: PLEDGES FOR HYDRO-SOLIDARITY water in this time of unprecedented key elements of success: Solidarity, Initiative. Despite the support lent by change demand a global response.” security, adaptability and useful these programmes at the global scale, dialogue and policy statements Collaboration and solidarity must be cooperation on “It is only through have not been the governing principles of all efforts transboundary converted into to address the water challenge, agreed waters between an integrated approach actions on the András Szöllösi-Nagy, Director of neighbors.” The involving all ground. For UNESCO’s Division of Water and Ministers, like- stakeholders across example, the 1997 Secretary of the International Hydro- wise, committed UN Convention logical Programme, speaking in a to taking “con- all sectors and on non-navigation concluding thematic session. While crete and tangible disciplines… that we uses of water- this may be widely accepted, there are steps to improve will find the solutions ways has still not numerous obstacles to putting this and promote obtained enough ideal into practice, he observed. cooperation on to the many water support for its Among the impediments: lingering sustainable use problems we face.” ratification, historical enmities and differences, and protection of including from financial limitations, the lack of tech- transboundary Koïchiro Matsuura, UNESCO. leading G8 nical and institutional capacity, and water resources”, member states, the absence of political will. including sharing data and implementing although France did announce its instruments for improved management. pledge to ratify the treaty at the 5th World Water Forum. The overarching theme of the 5th World Water Forum was “Bridging Sibylle Vermont, Vice Chair of the Divides for Water”, a clear call for the United Nations Economic Commission water community and all stakeholders for Europe’s Convention on the to come together to take action. The Protection and Use of Transboundary consensus expected among participants Watercourses and international Lakes in Istanbul was that cooperation and noted that the 1997 UN Convention transboundary solutions were essential, fosters cooperation because it obliges but results fell somewhat short of signatories to enter into bilateral and Yoshiro Mori, former Prime Minister of Japan expectations. Moreover, new chal- multilateral negotiations and establish and President of the APWF. lenges appeared. In discussions, it was joint bodies. evident that the recent food and energy crises have exacerbated tensions between the hydroelectric and There are more agricultural sectors, the economic than 263 impacts of which created an even greater schism between upstream and transboundary downstream users. river basins around the world and However, progress has been made on transboundary cooperation during the hundreds 4th and 5th World Water Fora, in that of transboundary many official statements and repre- aquifers on which sentatives of the global water users community have recognized the need over 3 billion for increased cooperation and have people depend. supported efforts through programs such as UNESCO’s “From Potential Conflict to Cooperation Potentail”, the However, the Heads of State attending US Agricultural Resources Model, the José Luis Luege Tamargo, Director General of Mexico’s the 5th World Water Forum specifi- International Network of Basin National Water Commission. cally reaffirmed their political will “to Organisations’ Associated Programme, 50 take rapid action, bearing in mind the Twinbasin, and the European Water
  • 50. The result of these discussions At the Forum, participants identified emphasized the need to move more priority regions that urgently require towards actions through the imple- improvements in transboundary mentation of policies. Participants also management mechanisms. These agreed that international law could be include the Nile River Basin, which is reinforced by developing together shared among 10 African countries; practical positions and definitions of the Jordan River; the Aral Sea basin; responsibilities, criteria, obligations the Senegal River; and the Juba and and cost-sharing strategies. It was felt Shabelle Rivers between Somalia and that future actions must: Ethiopia. In many cases, though the nations involved may not be at war, András Szöllösi-Nagy, Director of UNESCO’s • Recognize that the onset of distrust or conflict has prevented Division of Water and Secretary of the International Hydrological Programme. global changes will require c o o p e r a t i o n ove r s h a r e d wa t e r adaptive strategies to be put resources. in place; • Promote the strengthening Water should be an instrument of and reproduction of existing peace–a means to achieve human cooperation and basin security rather than a source of organizations and build their discord. Water professionals thus have capacities; a responsibility to be promoters and leaders of the transformation of trans- • Encourage the flexibility boundary waters into zones of peace. of legal and institutional The development of regional basin frameworks both at the global information and monitoring systems, and regional level in order to in addition to training, public partici- deal with changes and pation and awareness-raising activities, • Increase education and training are just a few tools available to them to on basin management and turn this goal into reality. ■ transboundary cooperation. Water should be an instrument of peace - a means to achieve human security rather than a source of discord. © Photo: Gilad Rom. 51
  • 51. 52 © Photo: Water For People - Nancy Haws.
  • 52. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 “We acknowledge THE the discussions within the UN system regarding human rights and access to safe drinking water RIGHT and sanitation. We recognize that access to safe drinking water and sanitation is a basic DEBATE human need.” Ministerial Statement, 5th World Water Forum, Istanbul, 2009. 53
  • 53. THE RIGHT DEBATE occasions during the Forum. “Dignity or disease. Water does not only mean T he ministerial statement issued at the 5th World Water Forum is not negotiable.” In his address at life; it means civilization.” and the vigorous debate that the opening ceremony, Abdullah Gül, Jean-Louis Borloo, the French Minister it produced form a step the President of Turkey, declared that for Ecology, Energy and Sustainable forward in forging a global consensus “water is the most fundamental element Development, stated plainly during on the right to water and sanitation. and is essential to our survival. Without a ministerial roundtable: “Water is the Many Forum participants, however, water, we cannot fight poverty, hunger right to life.” were disappointed that the ministerial statement issued in Istanbul did not explicitly recognize the right to water and sanitation. “The ministerial decla- ration seems to go back in time and go back on commitments on the right of water,” argued Sara Ahmed, Chairperson of the Gender and Water Alliance, in a statement at the closing plenary. “It is the role of governments to protect their people and those most at risk. Many countries have enshrined the right [to water] in their constitutions and we commend them for doing so. Loïc Fauchon, President of the World Water Council. But the human right to water has been less well implemented. The right to water and sanitation is a fundamental human right.” Sara Ahmed, Chairperson of the Gender The main debate, however, actually and Water Alliance. concerned the distinction between water as a human right or as a social and economic right, the latter concept already widely accepted by a majority of countries. As a result, many officials preferred to defer taking a definitive position on the matter until the UN Committee on Human Rights produces its commissioned report, thoroughly evaluating all the implications involved. Indeed, the UN Human Rights Council last year adopted by consensus a reso- Abdullah Gül, the President of Turkey. Jean-Louis Borloo, the French Minister for lution sponsored by Germany, Spain Ecology, Energy and Sustainable Development. and more than 40 other nations calling for the appointment of an independent expert on human rights obligations The concept of the right to water - related to the access to safe drinking “The right to water what it includes, what it doesn’t include water and sanitation. - was initially elaborated in a report is an essential released at the 4th World Water The debates in Istanbul underscored element of human Forum, following extensive stakeholder that more and more people are reco- dignity. consultations (Right to Water: From gnizing the moral imperative of Concept to Implementation, World providing access to water and sanitation Dignity is not Water Council 2006). This document to everyone. “The right to water is an negotiable.” enabled further awareness-raising essential element of human dignity,” among political decision-makers. But Loïc Fauchon, President of the World it was just the beginning. Discussions Loïc Fauchon, World Water Council. 54 Water Council, repeated on several at the 5th Forum went beyond the
  • 54. Rights should take precedence. In addition, a majority of participants “Water is the most fundamental element recognized the access to water as a and is essential to our survival… Water does human right and expressed commitment not only mean life; it means civilization.” to all necessary actions for the pro- gressive implementation of it. They President Abdullah Gül, Turkey. also acknowledged that the Right to Water and Sanitation is crucial for advancing the MDGs. such significant time dedicated to it.” She also noted that more than 30 Consider, too, the significance of the countries already recognize the right parliamentarians’ declaration that the to water and sanitation-some, like “Right to water and sanitation should Uruguay, in their constitutions-and be recognized as a human right.” many international conventions and Or moreover, the Istanbul Water resolutions make reference to the Consensus, signed by over 60 local right to access. In addition, some and regional elected representatives governments, like France in 2006, during the Forum. The champion have enshrined the right to water and cities and regions that supported the sanitation in their national legislation, document acknowledged that “access accompanied by tariff measures to to good quality water and sanitation is ease the burden on poorer households. a basic right for all human beings and plays an essential role in life and The growing international consensus livelihoods, the preservation of the was evident in both the ministerial and health of the population and the fight parliamentary sessions when, country against poverty.” Signatories also by country, government representatives asserted that “water is a public good and legislators delivered often impas- and should therefore be under strict sioned statements declaring their support public control, independently of whether for recognizing the access water as a the services are delegated to the private basic human right. Political leaders sector or not.” from the Americas were among those who most actively argued the point. Renee Orellana, Bolivia’s Minister of Indeed, while the right-to-water de- Water and the Environment, was one bate remained vigorous, participants of the more strenuous supporters. in Istanbul generally adopted a more Meanwhile, José Luis Genta, the pragmatic or practical approach. Director for National Water and Sani- Especially in view of the current dire tation in Uruguay’s Ministry of Housing, global economic conditions, it is Virginia Roaf, Researcher and Consultant at the Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions. Land Planning and Environment, critically important not to let any proposed the drafting of a global water divisions over words impede real pact and strongly supported the principle action in addressing the immediate preliminary dialogue to emphasize the that water is a public good. priority of providing water and sanitation need for implementation and the right to the over 1 billion people in the to sanitation. If the Ministerial Statement fell short world currently lacking access. Stake- of expectations, the Ministerial round- holders involved in the Forum’s Building upon its debut at the 4th table discussions came a long way in “governance” theme concluded that World Water Forum in Mexico, As addressing the issue. There were strong legislation in itself is not sufficient. Virginia Roaf, Researcher and Consul- views among ministers that the right Implementation is, in fact, the key to tant at the Centre on Housing Rights to water was not adequately considered making a difference and should be the and Evictions, pointed out in a panel in the Ministerial Statement of the 5th focus of attention. session,maintained that the 5th World World Water Forum and that General Water Forum was “the first time the Comment No. 15 of the UN Committee right to water and sanitation has had on Economic, Social and Cultural 55
  • 55. THE RIGHT DEBATE “Access to good quality water and sanitation is a basic right for all human beings.” Istanbul Water Consensus for Local and Regional Authorities. The water community should concen- trate on the priorities at hand, Ania Grobicki, Executive Secretary of the Global Water Partnership, advised at one thematic session. “We need to focus on institutional change and institution building, policy change, and the regulatory frameworks that need to be put in place.” “Proponents of the right to water,” said Natalie Erard, a Swiss Foreign Ministry human rights specialist, “should ask ourselves what we can bring back home to turn reflection into action. We need sound mechanisms to Ministerial Conference. implement this right. We need good governance and frameworks so we can FROM MEXICO CITY TO ISTANBUL: PROGRESS ON THE use the best practices of stakeholders. It may seem like it will take a long time, but we are moving step by step. > September 2006: > December 2006: We need to be very practical and The Summit of the Non-Aligned The French Parliament votes innovative in using all the tools that Movement in Havana, attended a law stating that “each individual we have.” ■ by ministers from 116 developing has the right of access to safe countries officially supports water for drinking and personal the right to water approach. hygiene in conditions that are > November 2006: economically acceptable to all.” At the First Summit of Africa- (Law on water and aquatic South America held in Abuja environments). (Nigeria), the Heads of State > March 2007: declare “We shall promote In a speech given by Dutch the right of our citizens to have Minister for Development access to clean and safe water Cooperation on the occasion and sanitation within our of World Water Day, respective jurisdictions.” the Netherlands recognizes > November 2006: the human right to water. The UK officially recognizes the human right to water. 56
  • 56. RIGHT TO WATER > December 2007: > October 2008: > January 2009: In the Beppu Declaration, Ecuador’s new Constitution The new Bolivian Constitution, the representatives of 36 States includes the right to water adopted by popular referendum, of the Asia-Pacific region state and sanitation. explicitly guarantees the right that they recognize “the people’s > November 2008: to water and sanitation. right to safe drinking water and The UN Council on Human basic sanitation as a basic human Rights appoints Mrs. Catarina de right and a fundamental aspect Albuquerque as the Independent of dignity.” Expert on human rights. > March 2008: > November 2008: The UN Council on Human The eight SACOSAN member “We need Rights adopts a resolution States (India, Afghanistan, sound mechanisms requesting a new study on the implementation of right Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, to implement Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) to drinking water and sanitation. reaffirm the right to water this right.” This resolution was supported and sanitation in the Delhi Natalie Erard, by 47 countries. Declaration. Swiss Foreign Ministry 57
  • 57. JULY - SEPTEMBER, 1989 OCTOBER 5, 2008 Aral Sea. 58
  • 58. Dialogue & Debate at the 5th World Water Forum Istanbul 2009 UNLOCKING THE DATA TREASURE CHEST R eliable weather and water that for data to be even more valuable, data provides a backbone institutions need to cooperate and to any water management coordinate their activities so that data decision, whether it is to and information can be turned into open or close sluice gates or to switch services that can help users. To do so on the sprinklers. Despite the importance requires a common integrated data of dependable data, the past decades and information system that includes have witnessed a global decline in the indicators, statistics and accounts. coverage and reliability of systems for How can such a system be created and collecting in situ hydrological data. maintained? At the same time, it has become clear 59
  • 59. UNLOCKING THE DATA TREASURE CHEST Wrap Up Session Theme 6 - Richard Meganck, Lidia Brito & Kalanithy Vairavamoorthy. During the 5th World Water Forum, trigger cooperation, encourage impro- speakers and participants zoomed in ved practices, and foster political on this issue and asked themselves: commitment. How can we unlock the data treasure chest? Data addressing any aspect of “In today’s globalized world, everyone freshwater are of great is either upstream or downstream of potential value and should everyone else, and we are all suffering “In today’s globalized world, be collected and stored from a lack of data,” explained Arthur everyone is either upstream or with great care--as if in a Askew, current President of the Inter- downstream of everyone else, treasure chest. But today, national Association of Hydrological and we are all suffering from the treasure chest is only Sciences, and a Governor of the World partially filled because of Water Council. “Where there is a lack a lack of data. Where there the difficulty of obtaining of data, there are local and global is a lack of data, there are local the needed data. Further- consequences.” and global consequences.” more, the treasure chest is often locked because of Referring to data as “the poor cousin” Arthur Askew, President of the International Association data ownership issues, the in the water sector, Askew sounded of Hydrological Sciences. cost of collecting or acces- a note of optimism. There is growing sing data, and in some recognition that investment in the cases because of sensitive national collection, analysis and storage of security or sovereignty issues. water-related data is more important today than ever before, as many regions The aim of including this topic on the of the world are facing water shortages Forum’s agenda for the first time was or increased potential for droughts and to raise awareness of the importance floods brought on by climate change. of having an adequate database for effective management and decision András Szöllösi-Nagy, Director of the 60 making, to build common understanding, Division of Water and Secretary of
  • 60. UNESCO’s International Hydrological will continue to be inefficient and Programme (IHP) and a Governor of uncoordinated.” the World Water Council, noted that today, we have 30% less data about The IBM report quoted Water Resource Africa’s hydrology than we did 20 Management Expert Doug Miell: years ago. At the same time, “from “You can’t manage what data to knowledge and wisdom is a you can’t measure. We need long road”, he noted. “No sustainable all kinds of data collection, “Every aspect of the decisions can be made without data.” including real time, because hydrological cycle it is a lack of credible, avai- is in critical need of For example, in the High Level Panel lable and viable data that is that explored the nexus between water, holding us back.” purposeful data collection energy and food, several participants and analysis. Until that agreed that it is important to work However, there are still goal is achieved, management with farmers on achieving more many barriers to data avai- of fresh and oceanic water efficient water management. However, lability to overcome, espe- systems will continue successful collaboration will depend cially recognition from to be inefficient and on getting better flows of data in real decision makers that data uncoordinated”. time. Similarly, the High Level Expert collection is important Panel on Water and Disasters stressed enough to be supported A Global Innovation Outlook Report: Water, IBM. the importance of data and transparent institutionally and through data-sharing in optimizing the effecti- adequate funding. Despite veness of early-warning systems, thus, growing acceptance of the importance saving more lives. of accurate, reliable water-related data as the bedrock of informed decision Ricardo Martínez of the National Water making, funding is typically poorly Commission of Mexico commented recognized in national budgets. Askew that every day, decisions are being pointed to a common false belief that made with less and less data. Martínez spending money on long-term collection noted that more resources should be of water data is unnecessary. allocated to the local level where the “We need 20 to 30 years of data before data has to be collected. He called for we understand the basic nature of a paradigm shift in this regard and a body of water; but the hydrological pointed to the critical lack of integration regime is changing and nothing is across levels of data collection and use. stable, so we cannot stop measuring,” he said. “We need long records if we “We need an integrated framework if are going to make good estimates we are to have a holistic approach of the future probability of floods or towards [transforming] data into drought.” Investing in water records information. This should also include can, thus, truly contribute to maintaining information about economic variables,” the data treasure chest, helping to Martínez recommended. “We need address directly future water challenges. to build bridges between the water ■ sector and the economic, social and environment sectors.” In a report1 launched at the 5th World Water Forum, IBM drew attention to today’s data drought, noting that “every aspect of the hydrological cycle is in critical need of purposeful data collection and analysis. Until 1AGlobal Innovation Outlook Report: that goal is achieved, management Water, 16 March 2009, of fresh and oceanic water systems www.ibm.com/imb/gio/water.html Session Barriers to Data Availability. 61
  • 61. UNLOCKING THE DATA TREASURE CHEST POLITICAL COMMITMENTS TECHNOLOGY OFFERS INNOVATIVE ON DATA SOLUTIONS FOR THE 21ST CENTURY > The Istanbul Water Guide, annexed to the > Computers could help monitor water, Ministerial Statement, recognized the need such as installing smart meters to limit lawn to invest in data. “The collection, analysis watering to evening hours, or using sensors and compatibility of critical data and to detect leaks in pipes. Software solutions information should not be regarded already exist to help us fully understand as an expenditure, but as a creditable a resource such as a river basin by visualizing, investment, often financed by taxpayers, interpreting and analyzing a wide range with high-quality returns.” of data in a single representation known as a single earth model. > Ministers also called on the international development partner community to support > In discussing how science and innovation projects to improve data collection, which can help address future water issues, they recognized as “the foundation of all particularly in developing countries, Kalanithy Integrated Water Resource Management Vairavamoorthy, Chair of Water Engineering, processes.” University of Birmingham and Chair, They also recognized the need to: UNESCO IHE Institute for Water Education, said new technologies could help data-scarce ■ Monitor and assess data to identify trends; countries. ■ Promote international and interstate data exchange and cooperation between > “By embracing new developments countries, and; in technology, we will be able to generate ■ Strengthen the use of data in decision optimal water management solutions making. and strategies that are robust, adaptable and sustainable under future global change > Parliamentarians who gathered at the Forum pressures,” he said. “We need more also recognized the importance of access imaginative and powerful ways to harness and sharing of data, calling for the World the potential of technology. For example, Water Council to create a permanent in developing countries, using SMS to text international parliamentary helpdesk local data could help [unlock] the data to facilitate political cooperation on water treasure chest.” legislation and its implementation, based on sound knowledge. > In fact, the data treasure chest is already Data collection, management and sharing being unlocked. Google Earth’s Integrated are critical to monitor progress in this area. Water Model will create a community space for people to post data about issues such as local pollution and water quality. “People will do the groundwork and post a pin on a Google map,” explained Vairavamoorthy. “This will inform decision making by investors, for example. It will also force water companies to become more transparent. Water losses and leakages will be exposed, resulting in pressure from the general public to operate a better system.” 62
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  • 70. Paper from renewable forests. Design: France Document. WORLD WATER COUNCIL - CONSEIL MONDIAL DE L’EAU Espace Gaymard - 2-4 Place d’Arvieux - 13002 Marseille - France Tel : +33 (0)4 91 99 41 00 - Fax : +33 (0)4 91 99 41 01 wwc@worldwatercouncil.org www.worldwatercouncil.org

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