Global and local water-related challenges are becoming increasingly severe due to climate change, population growth, industrialization and urbanization. Flooding is the most disastrous type of local challenge and causes significant problems in human livelihood. A particularly difficult situation occurs when the amount of water to be treated exceeds the capacity of the unit. Then untreated water needs to be led directly to the environment.
The Water Project Toolkit addresses the sustainable development of the water sector and contributes to translating the international development policies on freshwater resources management into actual development cooperation activities. The Water Project Toolkit is intended to be used by sector stakeholders such as governments, private sector, civil society, development partners, Universities and other training institutions, international organisations and all other practitioners involved in the water sector.
Proposal for a revised directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on Priority Substances in the field of water quality
The EU Water Framework Directive set the objective of the achievement of the good status objective for European water bodies by 2015. Significant progress have been made, but improvements in water quality in the EU could be at risk from new forms of chemical pollution. Hence, the Commission is proposing to add 15 chemicals to the list of 33 pollutants that are monitored and controlled in EU surface waters. This is another step towards improving the quality of our river, lake and coastal waters.
The Water Regulation Information System – A Suitable Instrument to Monitor the Progressive Realization of the Human Right to Water and Sanitation
The Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB), as Regulator, is mandated to ensure that consumers are protected and have access to efficient, adequate, affordable and sustainable services. For that purpose, WASREB, inter alia, monitors, evaluates and reports on the performance of Water Service Providers (WSPs) – utilities – and Water Services Boards (WSBs) – asset holders – in providing adequate water services to the consumer, using the Water Regulation Information System (WARIS) as its main data source. The latter is a database application software which helps WASREB to collect up-to-date technical, financial, personnel, commercial and general information on WSPs and WSBs, allowing for effective regulatory decision-making as well as public reporting by the Regulator on sector performance via the annual IMPACT Report. More broadly, it helps to inform policy making, planning and implementation towards improving service levels and the extending formal services to all Kenyans.
Overexploitation (due to overpopulation, industrial and agricultural policies or mass tourism) is leading to a gradual and sometimes irreversible damage to our water resources. This risk is particularly acute in coastal areas where excessive strain on the water supply is causing salt intrusion, thereby damaging pumping stations and threatening the quality of groundwater. Only a targeted, continuous and proactive management of these aquifers can prevent this threat and avoid an expensive, lengthy and difficult remediation process. The imaGeau innovative technology can address this issue by proposing the following:
- A continuous and dynamic monitoring of the quality and availability of water resources
- A high frequency time series and historical data log over several months or years
- Online access to groundwater data for monitoring and sustainable management.
The crisis of lack of access to Water and Sanitation services, affects the poor most. Poor people residing in rural areas and especially in urban slums do not have access and public and private servie providers do not have plans to deliver services to poor areas.
Policy makers are seldom aware of the challenges being faced by the poor in accessing services, mainly because the voices of the poor are rarely heard in debates on problems and solutions on water issues.
To address this problem, WASH Journalists in the West Africa region where about 300million people lack access to WASH services, formed a regional network with the strategic objective of amplifying the voices of poor people on WASH issues and increase visibility of lack of access of the region’s poor to water and sanitation services, and generate discussions on practical, low cost, and people centred programmes to resolve this challenge.
The South African Department of Water Affairs has embarked on the design of a National Estuaries Monitoring Programme (NESMP) as required in the National Water Act. The foundation of this three tiered programme, monitoring biotic and abiotic components, is collaboration with all role players in the management of estuaries. The rationale for this is to coordinate activities and prevent duplication of monitoring efforts thereby ensuring cooperative governance and efficient use of public funds.
Regarding frequent sustainability gaps issues of water piped systems in small towns, several countries all over the world have adopted and implement monitoring mechanims to improve water services performance and transparence. To improve the understanding of these different mechanisms and to promote the setting up of such mechanisms in countries where they do not exist, a community of practice, gathering 300 personnes from 15 countries, has been launched at the beginning of 2011.
The solution is a system of long-term field and remote-sensing monitoring of wetlands in transboundary upper Amur-river basin. Main tasks of the monitoring system are 1) to study influence of climate variability on upper Amur basin wetlands; 2) scientific basis for sustainable adaptation of national and international politics of nature resources management to climate change and biodiversity conservation.
Second Assessment of Transboundary Rivers, Lakes and Groundwaters: a comprehensive overview of the status of transboundary waters in the UNECE region
The Second Assessment of Transboundary Rivers, Lakes and Groundwaters is the most comprehensive, up-to-date overview of the status of transboundary waters in the European and Asian parts of the UNECE region and identifies joint priorities and challenges.
It has been prepared upon request by the Sixth “Environment for Europe” Ministerial Conference as an input for the Seventh Ministerial Conference in Astana in September 2011. It has been carried out under the auspices of the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention).