2014 UN-Water Annual International Zaragoza Conference. Preparing for World Water Day 2014: Partnerships for improving water and energy access, efficiency and sustainability. 13-16 January 2014

The UN-Water Annual Zaragoza Conferences serve UN-Water to prepare for World Water Day. This conference is part of the road map for World Water Day 2014 focused on the nexus of water and energy. In preparation for the event, 9 UN agencies and programmes plus more than 120 experts, representatives of international companies in the water and energy sector, government and non-governmental organizations met from 13 to 16 January in Zaragoza, Spain, to address the challenges, relationships and joint solutions that arise in ensuring access, efficiency and sustainability in the provision of water and energy.

The conclusions of the conference will serve as a basis for developing the key messages to be used in the campaign of World Water Day this year.

>> Closing press release, 16 January 2014 PDF document

A picture is worth a thousand words

Conference Photo Gallery.

Conference Photo Gallery.

Conference Photo Gallery.

>> Conference Photo Gallery

Recordings of sessions

13 January 2014

>> Official welcoming
>> Setting the Scene

14 January 2014

>> Recap of previous day and overview of the day by Josefina Maestu
>> The Business Case for Integrated Energy-Water Planning and Investments – 1st part
>> The Business Case for Integrated Energy-Water Planning and Investments – 2nd part
>> Side Event 1: World Water Day 2014 Teaser
>> Industry partnerships to ensure water and energy efficiency and sustainability. Panel 1: UNIDO and Industry Partnerships
>> Industry partnerships to ensure water and energy efficiency and sustainability. Panel 2: Industry and other stakeholders partnerships
>> Side Event 2. Panel discussion on challenges for water and energy in Spain

15 January 2014

>> Recap of previous day and overview of the day by Josefina Maestu
>> Local Partnerships on W&E. Panel 1: Partnerships between water and energy utilities
>> Local Partnerships on W&E. Panel 2: Partnerships of Local and Sub national authorities with other actors
>> Side Event 3: World Water Week 2014
>> Policy Research and Innovation partnerships for W&E. Panel 1: Partnerships on policy research on water and energy
>> Policy Research and Innovation partnerships for W&E. Panel 2: Innovation partnerships on water and energy
>> Lessons learnt and roadmap to World Water Day
>> Side Event 4: Panel discussion on managing the nexus on water and energy in Spain

Learning from the participants’ experiences

Diego Rodríguez

"Partnership for improving water and energy efficiency and sustainability is of major importance for the World Bank. The World Bank has embarked on a global initiative: Thirsty Energy, which quantifies tradeoffs and identifies synergies between water and energy resource management and aims to help governments prepare for an uncertain future, and break disciplinary silos that prevent cross-sectoral planning. It focuses on increasing awareness of the urgent issues among relevant stakeholders in both water and energy sectors. It works with stakeholders to build country capacity to identify water constrains and plan energy and water resources comprehensively".

Diego Rodríguez is Senior Economist, Department of Transport, Water and Information Communication Technology (TWIWA), The World Bank.
>> Full interview

Bárbara Antón

"ICLEI has always been promoting the collaboration of stakeholders for promoting solutions that are suitable to foster sustainable development. Partnerships allow the pooling of knowledge, resources, capacities etc. and thus increase the potential to achieve the set goals".

Barbara Anton is project coordinator of the water team at the European Secretariat of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability.
>> Full interview

Robert Schröder

"The EU has developed the European Water Policy to ensure the good quality of water supply and quantitative management of water. In line with this policy, there is a strong relationship between water and energy; water is used in producing energy and the production of it has an effect on the quality and quantity of water. It is therefore important for us to look at both the water and energy policies and ensure the objectives are met. In order to achieve these targets, we believe partnerships or collaboration with partners in both the water and energy sectors will help find innovation approach solutions".

Robert Schröder is Policy Officer at the European Commission, DG Environment, Unit C.1 Protection of Water Resources
>> Full interview

Pol Adarve

"Abengoa vision is to be a world reference in the development of innovative technology solutions for sustainability, and we are always looking for new ways that enable us to add value to our projects. The establishment of partnerships is nowadays a requirement for developing complex projects. If all the players of the partnership have the same efficiency and sustainability objectives, the results will be in line."

Pol Adarve is Director of the Strategic Relations Department, Abeinsa Business Development, Abengoa.
>> Full interview

Annukka Lipponen

"It is clear that many decisions outside the sphere of water resources management, including energy policies, impact on the status of waters. In order to better 1) protect transboundary waters by preventing, controlling and reducing transboundary impacts, and 2) to promote reasonable and equitable utilization of shared waters (both are among the obligations of the UNECE Water Convention), an improved understanding of the inter-dependencies between water and energy, as well as inter-sectoral impacts is necessary. Striving towards higher efficiency and sustainability in the use of one resource commonly brings co-benefits also for the other resource".

Annukka Lipponen is Environmental Affairs Officer at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE).
>> Full interview

Victor Viñuales

"ECODES has worked in water efficiency, energy efficiency and access to water and sanitation for more than 15 years".

Víctor Viñuales is Executive Director of Fundación Ecología y Desarrollo.
>> Full interview

Shaoyi Li

"Sustainable development has three (3) pillars: economic, social and environment and UNEP embraces the integration of these pillars. UNEP seeks to foremost mainstream the environment issues into sustainable development. Water and energy issues are relevant to all the three pillars. If you waste water and energy, it impedes economic activities, causes pollution and deterioration of ecosystems, and emits more greenhouse gases (GHG)".

Shaoyi Li is Head of the Integrated Resource Management Unit, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
>> Full interview