Decade’s WeeklyUnited Nations, Water for Life, UN Water
 News from the International Decade for Action ’Water for Life’ 2005-2015
  Issue 10. 6 September 2013 
This week in focus  Editor’s note

Welcome to the Decade’s Weekly! Every week it brings you the latest news from the International Decade for Action ’Water for Life’ 2005-2015. Please feel free to forward this newsletter. You can also access this newsletter online.

Tip of the week
The Water for Life Decade’s website now in Chinese

The Water for Life Decade’s website now in Chinese The Chinese version of the ’Water for Life’ Decade’s website has been upgraded and now has a fresher design.

>> Access the Chinese website

Water for Life’s UN-Water Best Practices Award focuses on water and energy. Don’t forget to apply by 15 September 2013!

The United Nations Office to Support the International Decade for Action "Water for Life" 2005-2015/UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC) and the UN World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) invite you to apply to the 4th edition of the ’Water for Life’ UN-Water Best Practices Award.

The Award is open to projects or programmes achieving particularly effective results in the field of water management or in raising awareness in water issues.

The prize is awarded yearly in two categories, one in ’best water management practices’ and another one in ’best participatory, communication, awareness-raising and education practices’.

This edition’s focus is on Water and Energy as World Water Day 2014 is dedicated to this important issue. Application period is open until 15 September 2013.

>> More information

In the news Forthcoming events
#Disasters UN promotes survey of disasters and people living with disabilities

"We can expect that as many as 30 million people living with a disability are affected during an average year by earthquakes and weather-related hazards" said Margareta Wahlström, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, during the recent launch of a survey of people living with disabilities on their coping capacity in the face of a disaster event. This survey addresses on issues such as the ability to protect oneself from a disaster event and having sufficient time to evacuate before a possible disaster. The survey results will be announced on International Day for Disaster Reduction which is marked each year on 13 October. Have Your Say! If you’re living with a disability or you are a caregiver, take the survey and share your thoughts on living with disasters. The survey is available in several languages.
>> Participate in the survey until 25 September!

#WWWeek World Water Week: UN deputy chief urges greater international cooperation on sanitation

Now is the time for accelerated, energized and concerted action on water and sanitation, Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson on 2 September urged, calling for renewed cooperation on water management and access to adequate sanitation for the more than 2.5 billion people around the world without it. In a keynote address to the World Water Week plenary session in Stockholm, Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson said: "Dealing effectively with the water and sanitation crisis is fundamental to fighting disease and poverty."
>> More info >> Video-message

#WaterCooperation The High-Level International Conference on Water Cooperation concluded with a Declaration calling for water cooperation

Representatives from governments, international and regional organizations and civil society met in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, on 20 and 21 August 2013, at the High Level International Conference on Water Cooperation to support the implementation of United Nations General Assembly Resolution A/67/204 "Implementation of the International Year of Water Cooperation, 2013," and to promote actions at all levels to advance cooperation on water. The Conference concluded with the adoption of a declaration that recognizes the importance of water cooperation and demands stronger dialogue at all levels.
>> Access the Declaration

#ToiletDay In July 2013 the United Nations General Assembly designated 19 November as World Toilet Day

In a bid to make sanitation for all a global development priority, the United Nations General Assembly has designated 19 November as World Toilet Day, urging changes in both behaviour and policy on issues ranging from enhancing water management to ending open-air defecation.
>> More info

#Sanitation&Water Political will key to ensuring water and sanitation for all, says UN-backed report

Political leadership and concrete action have led to good progress on creating universal and sustainable access to decent sanitation and drinking water, but additional efforts are needed to fulfil commitments by the 2014 deadline, a United Nations-backed partnership released in August 2013 reported. Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson welcomed the "encouraging steps forward" detailed in the 2013 Progress Update issued by the Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) partnership.
>> More info >> Access the Sanitation and Water for all 2013 Progress Update PDF document

5 Reasons Why Just Building Toilets Won’t Improve Urban Sanitation

It’s widely reported that most of the world’s population lives in urban areas. UN-Habitat estimates that 40% of urban dwellers live in slums, and that number is growing by more than 20 million people per year. Perhaps, less commonly reported is that while population is growing rapidly, urban sanitation coverage has only increased slightly.
By Peter Hawkins on the World’s Bank Water Blog.
>> Continue reading

#HumanRights Water and Human Rights in the Post 2015 Agenda. Side-Event at UN Human Rights Council 2013

Date: 13 September 2013 Time: 13:00
Place: Room XXI, UN building, Geneva
Organizers: WaterLex in partnership with UN-Water and others

This side event of the 24th session of the UN Human Rights Council will be devoted to the issue of water and human rights in the post-2015 agenda.

>> More info

#Desertification 11th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention to combat desertification

Date: 16-27 September 2013
Place: Windhoek, Namibia

COP11 will be convened under the theme "A stronger UNCCD for a Land-Degradation Neutral World". The theme marks the progress the Parties to the Convention made under the 10-Year Strategy and encourages further action for its successful implementation during the latter half of the Strategy period; it also reflects the UNCCD vision of a way forward after the Rio+20 outcome on land degradation, desertification and drought.

>> More info

#Post2015 Corporate Water Stewardship and the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda

Date: 19 September 2013
Time: 9:00 am
Place: Grand Hyatt, New York, USA
Organizer: CEO Water Mandate

This side event, which will coincide with the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit on September 19-20, will advance the CEO Water Mandate’s ongoing discussions regarding water and the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda. This session will further explore and unpack the prospective role of business in advancing potential policy objectives relating to increased access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services; improved water resources management and governance; efficient water use; and pollution reduction. In particular, it will delve into the role of business in supporting achievement of these goals, how the goals can be framed to ensure maximum impact and alignment with emerging water stewardship practice, and how to get from goals to meaningful corporate action on-the-ground.

>> More info

#WaterRisks Tackling Water Risks to Ensure a Sustainable Future

Date: 25 September 2013
Time: 1:15 pm
Place: UN Headquarters, New York, USA
Organizers: The Governments of Switzerland and the Netherlands, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB) and the World Water Council, with the participation of UN-Water

On the occasion of the UN General Assembly Special Event on the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, this Ministerial luncheon will provide an opportunity for a high level roundtable discussion with country representatives, international organisations, civil society and the private sector on best practices and key factors of success to address water-related risks in five major areas: economic prosperity, human health, political stability, disaster risk management and governance.

>> More info

Latest videos

UN-Water Stakeholder Dialogue at World Water Week 2013: Triggering Action on Water through the Post 2015 Agenda
Video record of session ’Triggering Action on Water through the Post-2015 Agenda’ at World Water Week, 1 September 2013. Participants in this seminar presented and discussed the most recent proposals for a Water Sustainable Development Goal.

UN-Water Seminar at World Water Week 2013: Exploring the water-energy nexus
Video record of session ’Exploring the Water-Energy Nexus’ at World Water Week, 4 September 2013. UN-Water organized this seminar at World Water Week 2013 as part of its preparatory process for World Water Day (WWD) in 2014, which will focus on "Water and Energy".

>> Videos accessible from the UN water video library

You make the Decade! Who has joined the Water Decade campaign?

  • CoolTour 2013 - 8 to 15 September 2013

CoolTour 2013 is a cultural festival organized by Associazione Liberi Libri which is held from 8 to 15 September 2013 in Rovato, Lombardy, Italy. Every night, a different event will take place, ranging from theatre to music concerts, from film projections to scientific conferences, everything turning around a common theme: Water. CoolTour 2013 has joined the Water for Life Decade’s campaign and the Decade’s logo is featured in different information materials produced.
>> More information

  • ’Acqua Spreco Zero’ - Waste Water Zero project

The ’Acqua Spreco Zero’ - Waste Water Zero project in Rome, Italy, is a social responsibility initiative for environmental sustainability which takes place in schools and has involved 60 Institutes and about 35.000 students between 6 and 13 years old to date. The initiative has been implemented by Next Generation Act, a non for profit association that promotes responsibility towards future generations. About 2.000 water flux reducters have been installed in the dining halls and bathrooms; 3.000 didactical panels have been displayed in classes and common spaces; and about 35.000 flyers on water use best practices have been distributed. Students have produced artworks about water and its correct use; during the 1st edition they produced poetries, strips and tales (totally about 450 writings) which were collected in the publication ’Acqua in venti righe’ and distributed to all the participants during a public ceremony; during the 2nd edition, students produced artworks (more than 50 paintings, installations and videos) which were displayed in the final exhibition ’World Water Vision’ open to the schools and the general public; the 3rd edition focused on the theme "Save the Water. Save the Future" and students contributed with their vision through a communications campaign. The project joined the Water for Life Decade’s campaign and the Decade’ logo has been used in all didactical and communication tools distributed in the participating schools in 2010, 2011 and 2012.
>> More information

  • Big Jump Challenge 2012

The Big Jump Challenge 2012 called young people to jump into rivers and lakes to raise awareness on water quality in Germany. The challenge has been an activity since 2005 and aims to help with this awareness raising activity to fulfill the European framework until its deadline in 2015. This education campaign has been organized by the Social Entrepreneurship Research Group GETIDOS. The initiative joined the Water for Life Decade’s Campaign and the Decade’s logo is featured in the initiative’s website.

Want to be part of the Decade’s campaign? Join us!