WATER PEACE AT HOME WATER PEACE IN THE WORLD
40 countries, regional integration and international organizations, international financial institutions, NGOs, academic and research centers have made a united call at the United Nations 2023 Water Conference to step up global efforts for transboundary water cooperation.
A joint statement delivered to the Conference plenary by the President of Slovenia Nataša Pirc Musar on behalf of the Transboundary Water Cooperation Coalition, warned that “cooperation in most transboundary basins is not adequate to deal with future challenges, and progress is too slow”, calling for “increased ambition of the world’s efforts in this area”.
“The existence of effective and sustainable transboundary water cooperation can catalyze regional integration, drive cooperation in other areas, or build sustainable peace. The absence of such cooperation is at best a waste of resources and, in the worst cases, can multiply risks that can contribute to the destabilization of societies and threaten security”, warned the Coalition.
Transboundary waters account for 60 per cent of the world’s freshwater flows, on which more than 3 billion people depend. “Cooperation over transboundary surface and groundwater is therefore essential to promote sustainable economic development, human and environmental health, biodiversity, climate action and resilience, disaster risk reduction, and peace”, stressed the statement.
“With 153 countries worldwide sharing water resources, advancing cooperation across borders needs to be at the heart of transformative water action worldwide. UNECE is proud to support the Transboundary Water Cooperation Coalition and encourages all governments to announce their commitment to join the United Nations Water Convention as a practical means to put this cooperation into action”, stated UNECE Executive Secretary Olga Algayerova.
To deliver transformative water action worldwide, the Coalition calls for increased efforts to:
Coalition members have submitted commitments supporting the above needs that form part of the Conference’s Water Action Agenda, and have inspired others to do the same. Some of those commitments will be presented at the Coalition’s side event on 23 March at 6.30 p.m. EST in New York and online through UN Web TV.
The Transboundary Water Cooperation Coalition is a diverse, multi-stakeholder coalition of actors made up of the following countries: Chile, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Namibia, The Netherlands, Panama, Senegal, Slovenia, Switzerland, Uganda; the European Union as a regional integration organization; as well as and the following organizations: ESCWA, Global Environment Facility (GEF) , Inter-American Development Bank (IaDB), Organization of American States (OAS), UNCDF, UNDP, UNECE, UNEP, UNESCO, World Bank, Centro Regional para la Gestión de Aguas Subterráneas en América Latina y el Caribe (CeReGAS), EcoPeace Middle East, Geneva Water Hub, Global Water Partnership (GWP), International Groundwater Resources Assessment Centre (IGRAC), IHE Delft Institute for Water Education, International Network of Basin Organizations (INBO), IUCN, Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), University of Kinshasa, Water Diplomacy Center/Jordan University of Science and Technology.