In the face of profound global water challenges, on World Water Day five global multi-stakeholder partnerships representing business, governments, intergovernmental organizations, academia, and civil society organizations announced a new collaboration effort designed to accelerate progress toward ensuring the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation around the world.
The partnership was catalyzed by the discussions at the 8th World Water Forum in Brasilia, including the Citizens Forum and Sustainability Focus Group, and the High-Level Panel on Water report, “Making Every Drop Count”. The report says if the world continues on its current path, it may face a 40 percent shortfall in water availability by 2030. Health, food security, energy sustainability, jobs, cities, and ecosystems are increasingly at risk due to exacerbating natural variability of the water cycle and growing water stress.
Jason Morrison, Head, CEO Water Mandate said: “Water challenges pose critical risks to businesses, governments, and communities alike. The only way we can tackle them is by deepening our collaboration within the water sector.”
The World Bank Water Global Practice, 2030 Water Resources Group, Global Water Partnership, World Water Council, and UN Global Compact’s CEO Water Mandate commit to coordinate a set of actions toward increased water security. Water security underpins economic growth, social development and environmental sustainability.
“Through this partnership, the World Bank Group aims to build an alliance of committed stakeholders to catalyze change and implement the recommendations of the High-Level Panel on Water. The goal of global water security requires an urgent coordinated response amongst dedicated international development organization,” said Guangzhe Chen, Senior Director, World Bank Water Global Practice
The Making Every Drop Count report also finds:
- 40 percent of the world’s population is affected by water scarcity
- As many as 700 million people could be displaced by 2030 in search for water
- More than 2 billion people are compelled to drink unsafe water
- 4.5 billion people do not have access to safely managed sanitation
Aiming to find collaborative solutions to better manage and value water, the global multi-stakeholder partnerships will explore how to more effectively coordinate and align their efforts toward the urgent goal of water security, in line with the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
On World Water Day 2018, the organizations agreed to:
- Take into account the outcomes of the 8th World Water Forum, proposed by the various political, thematic, regional, citizen, and sustainability processes
- Endorse the recommendations of the High-Level Panel on Water (HLPW) “Making Every Drop Count”
- Recognize the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 17) that promotes partnerships as a key means of implementation of the 2030 development agenda – in particular for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals calling for a Water Secure World (SDG6)
- Commit to convene a series of discussions between the leaders of the organizations, starting in August 2018
- Explore and agree on pathways towards improving global coordination and collaboration among these and other organizations, in view of accelerating progress towards a water-secure world
Benedito Braga, President, World Water Council said: “The World Water Council is pleased to offer its expertise in gathering stakeholders from every horizon to mobilize political will and catalyze positive action for the cause of water. We are stronger together than we are individually, and joining our voices gives new inspiration and opportunity to accelerate and enforce our efforts towards an integrated agenda at the global, regional and local levels.”