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Harmonizing the United Nations Action Decades for Water and Nutrition

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Given at Stockholm World Water Week on 27 August, 2019 by Stineke Oenema, this presentation looks at the links between nutrition and access to fresh water in relation to achieving the SDGs.

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Harmonizing the United Nations Action Decades for Water and Nutrition

  1. 1. 27 August 2019 World Water Week Harmonizing the United Nations Action Decades for Water and Nutrition Stineke Oenema, UNSCN Coordinator
  2. 2. CONTEXT BACKGROUND OF THE WATER AND NUTRITION WATER DECADES • International Decade (2018-2028) for Action - Water for Sustainable Development • Following the success of the “Water for Life” Decade (2005-2015) • Concerns about water safety and water disasters related to climate • Water stated as critical to eradicate hunger and poverty • Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016-2025) • Progress were lacking in achieving food and nutrition security • Aims to accelerate the implementation of ICN2 recommendations • SDG 2 and 3 are central, SDG 6 is included World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 1 1
  3. 3. CONTEXT OVERVIEW OF WATER RESOURCES AND FOOD AND NUTRITION STATUS (1) • Water resources status … → Distribution of freshwater resources differs significantly around the world World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 2 2 Per capita water availability, 2005 Note: Calculated as population divided by internal renewable water resources. Source: IFPRI IMPACT [calculated June 20, 2019].
  4. 4. CONTEXT OVERVIEW OF WATER RESOURCES AND FOOD AND NUTRITION STATUS (2) • … food security and nutrition status → 1/3 people are malnourished, heading to 1/2 World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 3 3 In 2018 Children under 5 Adults Men Women Stunting 149 M (22%) Wasting 50 M (7.4%) Overweight/Obesity 6% overweight 13% obese (↗) Micronutrient deficiency Health and development consequences 1/3 with anaemia food insecure 800 M (↗) 822 M undernourished (↗ from 797 M in 2016) 2 B Micronutrient deficient 2 B Over- consume Poverty closely intertwined with food insecurity and malnutrition Women’s full production potential underutilized
  5. 5. CONTEXT OVERVIEW OF WATER RESOURCES AND FOOD AND NUTRITION STATUS (3) • Mutual pressure of water availability and food demand • Agriculture = biggest water user / use expected to keep growing of an estimated 15% between 2010 and 2050 • Most agriculture is rainfed agriculture → Depends a lot on local climate conditions … • Meanwhile, food demand keeps growing → Current water and food challenges: Not on track to achieve SDG 2 and SDG 6 World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 4 4
  6. 6. WATER-NUTRITIONLINKAGES THE LINKAGES BETWEEN WATER AND FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION (1) World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 5 5 Source: HLPE, 2015
  7. 7. BRINGINGDECADESTOGETHER HARMONIZING THE UNITED NATIONS DECADES OF ACTION ON NUTRITION AND WATER (1) • Ensure nutrition amid growing water stress (competition, demand and pollution) and climate change • Competition for water between households and ecosystems • Household water availability indicator shows significant association between household water and food insecurity • Climate change disturbs water-related ecosystems and food production (Crops, Fisheries, Livestock) • Wastewater is a valuable (sometimes the only) source of water, nutrients and organic matter for farmers, but is often untreated … World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 6 6
  8. 8. BRINGINGDECADESTOGETHER HARMONIZING THE UNITED NATIONS DECADES OF ACTION ON NUTRITION AND WATER (1) • Nutrition-sensitive agricultural water management • Nutrition sensitivity of water management is not only about irrigation • Most agriculture is rainfed, supplemented rainfed may help to expand crop diversity or crop season. → Consider diversification and better utilisation of crops, and income • Need for better water management for nutrition via rainfed agriculture supported by supplemental irrigation → Joint action at farm household, community and government level World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 7 7
  9. 9. BRINGINGDECADESTOGETHER HARMONIZING THE UNITED NATIONS DECADES OF ACTION ON NUTRITION AND WATER (4) • Ensure the environmental sustainability of diets • Limited knowledge on water use for food production, processing and preparation • Food availability increases. Yet, 30% of food are lost or wasted → Overuse and waste of water resources → Need to coordinate SDG 12, 2 and 6 : Five transformative strategies documented by the EAT- Lancet Commission → Develop dietary guidelines that include sustainability criteria World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 8 8
  10. 10. BRINGINGDECADESTOGETHER HARMONIZING THE UNITED NATIONS DECADES OF ACTION ON NUTRITION AND WATER (5) • Account for gender and other social dimensions in water- nutrition linkages • Nutritional and water needs depend on gender and period of life course (critical during the first 1000 days) • Make further advances on social dimensions in nutrition and water communities • Give access to WASH and irrigation system to the excluded World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 9 9 In charge of - many water-intensive chores - water collection → Lack of time and energy Childcare practices - quality of breastfeeding - time for healthy food preparation →
  11. 11. CONCLUSIONS FINAL CONSIDERATIONS Summarizing: Entry points to close the water nutrition gap • Develop nutrition sensitive water management • Support sustainable and healthy diets • Integrate social and gender dimensions World Water Week - 25-30 August 2019 10 10
  12. 12. UNSCN Secretariat E-mail: scn@fao.org Internet: www.unscn.org c/o FAO Viale delle Terme di Caracalla 00153 Rome, Italy UNSCN vision A world free from hunger and all forms of malnutrition is attainable in this generation

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