T8 - Conceptualizing water
tenure
17 December 2013
Land & Water Days
Amman, Jordan 17 December 2013
- VGGT adopted on 11
May 2012
- Water was not
included following
discussions within
FAO
- Reasons included:
-

Physical di...
Thinking about ‘water tenure’
• ‘Water tenure’ – effectively a new term
• In contrast, ‘land tenure’ is well established. ...
Scope of water tenure
• Formal water rights. Historically linked to land
tenure rights but now typically created on the
ba...
Scope of water tenure
• Customary/local law rights – may be ancient,
may be new. Do not always ‘fit’ well with
formal lega...
Scope of water tenure
• Informal/illegal use of water – a legal or a
socio-economic issue
• Non-consumptive use for fisher...
Defining ‘water tenure’
The relationship whether legally or customarily defined between people, as
individuals or groups, ...
Why talk about water tenure and not
just water rights?
Water tenure enables us:
• to gain a systematic & holistic understa...
Evaluating water tenure
arrangements
Importance of promoting secure, sustainable and
equitable water tenure in terms of pr...
D. Water tenure & water governance
Secure, sustainable, equitable
water tenure arrangements
Effective water governance
Two...
Possible FAO action on water tenure
• High level voluntary guidelines on water
tenure
• Technical guidelines on:
– formal ...
Possible steps to strengthen water
tenure at the national level
• Water tenure assessment
• Water tenure policy
• Implemen...
Thank you!
T8: Conceptualizing water tenure
T8: Conceptualizing water tenure
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T8: Conceptualizing water tenure

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Conceptualizing water tenure, Land and Water Days in Near East & North Africa, 15-18 December 2013, Amman, Jordan

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T8: Conceptualizing water tenure

  1. 1. T8 - Conceptualizing water tenure 17 December 2013 Land & Water Days Amman, Jordan 17 December 2013
  2. 2. - VGGT adopted on 11 May 2012 - Water was not included following discussions within FAO - Reasons included: - Physical differences Intl. dimension Occupation Public/private Allocation/markets
  3. 3. Thinking about ‘water tenure’ • ‘Water tenure’ – effectively a new term • In contrast, ‘land tenure’ is well established. A widely used definition provided by FAO is: The relationship whether legally or customarily defined between people, as individuals or groups, with respect to land • In practice … property rights in the form of land ownership rights, use rights, lease rights, etc. • But land tenure is more than just rights, claims on land…its also the relationship between people
  4. 4. Scope of water tenure • Formal water rights. Historically linked to land tenure rights but now typically created on the basis of a concession/permit/licence. Based on state ownership of water resources. Long term (typically 10-25 years). May be costly to obtain. Usually for large scale uses. Possibility to trade rights • Small scale or de minimis uses – small scale, noncommercial uses. Exempted from the need to obtain a permit BUT no legal security
  5. 5. Scope of water tenure • Customary/local law rights – may be ancient, may be new. Do not always ‘fit’ well with formal legal rules. May be linked to customary land tenure rights • Irrigation rights of farmers on irrigation schemes that are managed by third parties (eg irrigation agency, water user association (WUA)). Right to a service.
  6. 6. Scope of water tenure • Informal/illegal use of water – a legal or a socio-economic issue • Non-consumptive use for fisheries/livelihood activities eg fishers may have rights to catch fish but not to the water • Cultural/aesthetic/recreational uses of water • Water for the environment
  7. 7. Defining ‘water tenure’ The relationship whether legally or customarily defined between people, as individuals or groups, with respect to water However… • • Human right to water Water supply A revised definition with a reference to water resources The relationship whether legally or customarily defined between people, as individuals or groups, with respect to water resources Key issues: claims on water resources – how to allocate water among different use types and different types of tenure arrangement
  8. 8. Why talk about water tenure and not just water rights? Water tenure enables us: • to gain a systematic & holistic understanding of the relationship between people & water resources • to understand the situation as it is • puts people at the heart of integrated water resources management • to look at rights & institutions together and to assess implementation • to examine the inter-relationship between water tenure & tenure of land & other resources Moreover – water tenure - has a political resonance that water rights simply do not have in many countries - means examining the only question that actually really matters to water users of all types – will I get my water?
  9. 9. Evaluating water tenure arrangements Importance of promoting secure, sustainable and equitable water tenure in terms of promoting investment, raising incomes in rural areas, preventing conflict …. First step: identify and evaluate water tenure arrangements by reference to: • Security • Sustainability • Equity
  10. 10. D. Water tenure & water governance Secure, sustainable, equitable water tenure arrangements Effective water governance Two relevant levels of water governance • Water governance in terms of water resources management • Water governance relating to the use of a shared resource (eg a WUA) Principles • Accountability • Transparency • Participation • Integration
  11. 11. Possible FAO action on water tenure • High level voluntary guidelines on water tenure • Technical guidelines on: – formal water rights, de minimis rights irrigation, customary tenure etc – Cross cutting issues - data & information, gender, water administration etc
  12. 12. Possible steps to strengthen water tenure at the national level • Water tenure assessment • Water tenure policy • Implementation: data & information, human & other resources, policy & legislative review, legislative reform, support to water users/civil society… • Dialogue: we do not have ready solutions to all of the challenges we face • But the main point is surely that water tenure exists … we just haven’t talked about it
  13. 13. Thank you!

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