Mr. Eliott Harris Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development and Chief Economist

Closing Remarks
Consultative Meeting: Sustainable water and energy solutions as an integrated response to climate change

Distinguished speakers and participants,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me start by extending my congratulations to all of you for your fruitful discussion.

We have heard from the distinguished panellists and discussants about the challenges of ensuring global water and energy sustainability in light of climate change, the opportunities that integrated approaches to implementation represent to deliver on both the SDGs and the Paris Agreement, and the role of hydropower in this context.

In particular, we have heard very interesting examples of strategies designed to tackle water, energy and climate change goals in a holistic manner.

These need to take a systematic approach that looks at all aspects of the water and energy nexus.

We spoke to the challenges of ensuring consistency of the integrated approach, as different government ministries and different stakeholders deal with the various issues.

We must continue mobilizing multi-stakeholder partnerships to achieve sustainable development.

Ladies and gentlemen,
Several also point to the importance of finance.  Several speakers also pointed out that hydropower is the most evident manifestation of the interlinkage between water and energy, but it is not the only one.  The Secretary-General has also warned us that, unless we change course by 2020, we also risk missing the point where we can avoid runaway climate change.

We have to both speed up and scale up our efforts. We have a number of opportunities that we can leverage to do so.

The International Decade for Action “Water for Sustainable Development” 2018-2028 is a global call to action to accelerate efforts towards meeting water-related challenges.

The midpoint review of the Decade for Sustainable Energy for All (2014-2024), taking place in a few weeks, brings a major opportunity to assess progress and identify directions in support of SDG 7.

The 2019 High-Level Political Forum offers a critical occasion for reviewing and for catalyzing ambitious actions. It will meet under the auspices of ECOSOC in July, and under the auspices of the General Assembly at the Summit level in September, to take stock of the first four years of implementation of the 2030 Agenda.

Also in September, the Secretary-General will convene a Climate Change Summit to mobilize ambition, action and finance.

Let us pledge never to rest until we have achieved a world with equitable and sustainable water and energy resources for all.

Together, we can make it happen.

Thank you.

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