UNESCO Director-General signs agreement on International Centre for Water Cooperation
On 25 March in Stockholm, Sweden, the UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova signed an agreement between UNESCO, the Government of Sweden and the Stockholm International Water Institute to make the International Centre for Water Cooperation in Sweden a Category 2 Centre. The Centre will support UNESCO's objectives by developing knowledge for cooperation in sustainable management of transboundary waters and build capacities through research and training. It will also play a vital role in the Potential Conflict to Cooperation Potential (PCCP) programme as well as the related work of the International Hydrological Programme (IHP) and the World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP).
57 UN Permanent Representatives sign a document urging for a dedicated Water and Sanitation Sustainable Development Goal
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On the occasion of World Water Day 2014, a campaign to collect signatures from UN Permanent Representatives has been circulated, encouraging all Member States to support the elaboration and adoption of a dedicated Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) on water and sanitation in the post-2015 development agenda. With water challenges increasing, hindering future development and threatening current advances, the campaign states "complacency is not an option, a committed and forceful response is urgently needed". The water and sanitation SDG would need to be ambitious, taking into account the unfinished business of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as well as future challenges. Documents from the Co-Chairs of the 9th session of the Open Working Group (OWG) on Sustainable Development Goals, which took place on 3-5 March 2014, will be used as a basis to help shape the SDG.
And the Water for Life Award goes to... India and Singapore
>> Progress report from the 9th Session OWG on Sustainable Development Goals
The United Nations only Award on Water, the 'Water for Life' UN-Water Best Practices Award was delivered on 21 March during the World Water Day 2014 UN celebrations in Tokyo, Japan, in recognition of several projects. The Award winners IWMI-Tata Water Policy Programme, India, and the NEWater Programme, Singapore, were recognised for their contribution to improved water management and awareness-raising in water and energy issues. The Award was further extended to finalists in India, Spain, and Kenya demonstrating a varied effort. As part of the Awards recognition a video provides an insight into the nature of the projects. The ceremony was captured in images available through the Award dedicated Facebook page.
World Water Day Journalist Workshop provided an opportunity to learn and share experiences
The Journalist Workshop organized by the UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC) in Tokyo, Japan, on the occasion of World Water Day gathered 25 journalists from 11 different Asian countries, including Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Korea, Pakistan, The Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Uzbekistan and Vietnam. Journalists were especially concerned with the disconnection between both sectors (water and energy) and its consequences, the monetization of water services, the dams debate, water trading, appropriate technologies and pitches for convincing governments. Participating journalists have created a collaborative network where they will continue exchanging their experiences and ideas for reporting on water and energy issues.
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>> UNW-DPAC Media Programme
2nd Workshop "River Basin Commissions and Other Joint Bodies for Transboundary Water Cooperation: Technical Aspects"
Date: 9-10 April 2014
Place: Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland
Organizers: Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), Governments of Finland and Germany
This workshop will focus on selected technical aspects in the work of joint bodies, notably inter-sectoral coordination, infrastructure, groundwater management, environmental protection and selected management issues, including financing and communication. The workshop will present and discuss the experiences of joint bodies in specific topics in transboundary water cooperation worldwide, demonstrate the benefits of transboundary water cooperation and increase awareness on how global legal frameworks relate to joint bodies and can support them.
3rd High Level Meeting of Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) approaches
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Date: 11 April 2014 Time: 1pm
Place: World Bank Headquarters, Washington DC, USA
Organizers: UNICEF on behalf of the SWA Partnership
The 2014 High Level Meeting (HLM) of SWA aims to provide a major milestone in the ongoing SWA High-Level Commitments Dialogue (HLCD). The meeting will build upon the previous success of the meetings, as can be seen in the 2013 Progress Update of the 2012 SWA HLM, which showed significant gains have already been achieved, such as increased budgets, strengthened National planning and country-level dialogues. The meeting will bring together ministers responsible for finance, water and sanitation from developing countries, ministries of development cooperation from donor countries, high-level representatives from development banks and leading sanitation agencies. This year's meeting will be jointly opened by the President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, and UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon.
International Workshop on Tools for Improving Drinking Water Quality and International strategic meeting on improving access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in health facilities
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Date: 21-23 April 2014
Place: Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality (MSSSI), Madrid, Spain
Organizers: Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality of Spain in collaboration with World Health Organisation (WHO), United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC)
This international workshop will discuss the tools for improving the quality of water for human consumption, including information systems, water safety plans and guidelines for quality drinking water. The main objective is to share knowledge and experiences between countries and international organizations. Participants include UN experts, international and national organisations.
The event will also include an International strategic meeting on improving access to water, sanitation and hygiene in health facilities which will bring together international organizations, national organizations from Spain, academics and donors to discuss and commence a global, collaborative effort to improve water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in health care facilities. Participants will present the latest global data regarding the status of this issue and discuss key gaps and measures to strengthen monitoring, policy and implementation. In addition, national case studies will be presented. The expected outcomes of the meeting include a Global strategy on WASH in health care facilities and a Global Action Plan for 2014-2024.
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