Dushanbe, Tajikistan

09 August 2016

Secretary-General's message to the High-Level Symposium on SDG 6 and targets ensuring that no one is left behind in access to Water and Sanitation

[Delivered by Mr. Gyan Chandra Acharya, High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States]

I am pleased to send greetings to all participants at this High-level Symposium.
I commend the Government of Tajikistan for its leadership and support in advancing the SDG on water and sanitation globally.

 

This progress is urgently needed in our world, where at least 1.8 billion people worldwide drink water that is contaminated and 2.4 billion people lack improved sanitation facilities.

 

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development promises to leave no one behind in access to basic services, including water and sanitation. Realizing this vision requires a comprehensive approach based on human rights principles.

 

SDG 6 represents the world’s hope for the kind of healthy ecosystems we need for a sustainable future. They cover the entire water cycle and underscore the fundamental message that water access is meaningless if it is not “safe”; and sanitation is not for all if it is not “equitable.” They highlight the paramount importance of taking an integrated approach to water resources management.

 

Achieving SDG 6 and its related targets will strengthen the delivery of essential services and the realization of basic human rights and fundamental freedom while driving progress across the 2030 Agenda.

 

To meet SDG 6 and its targets, we must improve the way we manages the planet’s precious water resources. We must transform the way we deliver water and sanitation services for billions of people. We must learn to work in partnership, engaging all stakeholders.  We must invest in the future of water and we strengthen capacity building by helping to foster an exchange of best practices and lessons learned.

 

The future of our planet and the global vision of a peaceful, prosperous and inclusive society are at stake. Let us join forces with all partners, including civil society, businesses, scientific and technological experts and individuals everywhere, to achieve our common vision of a life of dignity for all.

 

In this spirit, I wish you great success.