Decade’s WeeklyUnited Nations, Water for Life, UN Water
 News from the International Decade for Action ’Water for Life’ 2005-2015
  Issue 38. 30 May 2014 
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
Tip of the week
In support of World Environment Day, why not check out the UN Documentation Centre's selection of UN environment publications to see how water plays a significant role on it.
>> UN publications on water and

World Environment Day celebrates Small Island Developing States in the context of climate change

Date: 5 June 2014
Place: Worldwide

The UN General Assembly declared 2014 as the International Year of Small Island Developing States to raise awareness of the special needs of this diverse coalition as part of the global discussion on how to achieve a sustainable future for all. Some of the problems that these small islands face - climate change, waste management, unsustainable consumption, degradation of natural resources, extreme natural disasters and water scarcity - are the problems that face us all but they are the ones to suffer them first.

World Environment Day (WED) 2014 focuses on Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the broader context of climate change as its theme.

This year, an effort has made to make this day as important to the public as the issues and challenges themselves. Whether it is to organize clean-up campaigns, walk-to-work days, plastic purges, art exhibits, tree-planting drives, concerts, dance recitals, switching off the lights, recycling drives, social media campaigns and different contests - every action counts. When multiplied by a global chorus, our individual voices and actions become exponential in their impact. Why not get involved, be part of the change and register your own event

>> Message from UN Secretary General for WED2014
>> WED 2014 booklet
>> More information

In the news Forthcoming events
#EndOpenDefecation With help from Sesame Street, UN urges partners to break silence on open defecation

It is time to talk about open defecation, the United Nations declared on 28 May, launching a new campaign to end the practice and improve access to toilets and latrines for the 2.5 billion people worldwide without basic sanitation."I am here to talk about something the world chooses not to talk about," UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson said in new York at the launch of the campaign, which, among other aims, urges people to "search open defecation," find out more about the issue and participate in the solutions.
>> More information

#WaterAward eThekwini Water and Sanitation, winner of 1st edition of ’Water for Life’ Award, named 2014 winner of Stockholm Industry Water Award

In the past 14 years, 1.3 million additional people in greater Durban, South Africa, have been connected to piped water and 700,000 people have been provided with access to toilets. In addition to successfully providing basic services to a large and diverse population, eThekwini Water and Sanitation is at the forefront of exploring technical and social solutions; it has been a busy decade and a half and now the hard work and foresight of many has been acknowledged for its inspirational message in the Water and Sanitation sector. The Municipality of eThekwini Water & Sanitation in South Africa has been named 2014 winner of the Stockholm Industry Water Award, for its transformative and inclusive approach to providing water and sanitation services. The award comes after winning the category 2 "Best participatory, communication, awareness-raising and education practice' 1st edition of ’Water for Life’ UN-Water Best Practices Award in 2011. As part of the ’Water for Life’ Best Practices Award the video "Water: our life, our future" describes the different components of eThekwini water and sanitation initiative.
>> Watch the video "Water: our life, our future"
>> More information

#HumanRightWater Nominate or apply for the position of Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation

Having access to safe drinking water and sanitation is central to living a life in dignity and upholding human rights, yet billions of people still do not enjoy these fundamental rights. The rights to water and sanitation require that these services are available, accessible, safe, acceptable and affordable for all without discrimination. The mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation was established to examine these crucial issues and provide recommendations to Governments, to the United Nations and other stakeholders. Ms. Catarina de Albuquerque, current Special Rapporteur, finishes her term at the end of October 2014 and the position is open for applications until 30 June 2014.
>> More information

#WatercoursesConvention UNECE welcomes the entry into force of the United Nations Watercourses Convention

The 1997 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses (United Nations Watercourse Convention) will enter into force on 17 August 2014. When Viet Nam joined the convention on 19 May 2014, the required total of 35 parties was reached. Mr. Michael Møller, Acting Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) said he welcomes this "breakthrough for transboundary water cooperation and international water law worldwide." The 1997 United Nations Watercourses Convention seeks to ensure the development, conservation, management and protection of international watercourses and the promotion of their optimal and sustainable utilization.
>> More information

#BalkanFloods Emergency appeal for flood affected areas in 3 countries of the Sava River Basin

Following the tragic floods that have affected 3 countries in the Sava River Basin: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia, the Sava Commission has decided to postpone the 3rd meeting of the Youth Parliament to next September. The Sava River Basin was hit by the worst and biggest floods in recorded history. Large segments of the population have been evacuated and displaced across the region, and all available resources in the countries have been mobilized to provide aid in this difficult situation. Following these catastrophic floods, the Sava Commission temporarily suspended regular activities envisaged for this year's celebration of the Sava River Day - among which the Youth Parliament 2014 scheduled to be held from 30-31 May. The funds allocated for these activities will be donated as an aid to the victims in all 3 areas of the Sava countries. The UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy) and the Sava Commission are appealing to all partners to provide aid to the residents of flooded areas.
>> More information

#WaterOperators Workshop for the Assessment of Capacity Development Resources for Water and Sanitation Operators

Date: 2-3 June 2014
Place: UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft, The Netherlands
Organizers: Global Water Operators' Partnerships Alliance (GWOPA)/UN-Habitat, UN-Water Decade
Programme on Capacity Development (UNW-DPC) and UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education

This workshop, co-organized in the framework of the UN-Water Task Force on Capacity Development for Water Operators and the Boosting Effectiveness of Water Operators' Partnerships (BEWOP) project, aims at building synergies between these two global initiatives. These initiatives are looking at the assessment of existing Capacity Development resources for water and sanitation operators and at analyzing the more significant needs and gaps in these resources. Water Operators from 17 countries as well as members and partners of UN-Water will be attending. The approach for the work of the UN-Water Task Force is to gather resources and avail them to an extensive network of water supply and sanitation operators on a not-for-profit basis.
>> More information

#SE4ALL 1st annual Sustainable Energy for All Forum and global launch of the UN Decade of Sustainable Energy for All 2014-2024

Date: 4-6 June 2014
Place: UN Headquarters, New York, USA
Organizers: Sustainable Energy for All Initiative (SE4ALL)

The 1st annual Sustainable Energy for All Forum will officially launch the United Nations Decade of Sustainable Energy for All 2014-2024. In working towards its targets, the Forum will assess progress on SE4ALL since Rio +20; inspire and mobilise further action, partnership and commitments by showcasing success stories, innovation and best practices; and shape and set the direction for the global policy debate on energy. The importance of water within the model of sustainable energy will be discussed on the first day of the event, under the title 'Catalyzing investment through innovative business models: the water-energy-food nexus'.
>> More information

From the Decade's Programmes
#SustainableDevelopment Smart Aquae Campus and Aquae Campus Event

Date: 5-6 June 2014
Place: Finca Condal de San Bartolomé de Tirajana, Canary Islands, Spain
Organizers: Aquae Foundation

In the framework of World Environment Day, Aquae Foundation has launched a digital platform: The Smart Aquae Campus. With this platform, Aquae Foundation will promote two major initiatives to raise public awareness on how we care for the Earth and our responsibility for change: the "Aquae Innova Award" and contest on innovation "Tree of Life". As World Environment Day is dedicated to Small Island Developing States (SIDS), on 5 and 6 June the Encounter Aquae Campus Event will be held on the Canary Islands. With these two initiatives, Aquae Foundation intends to create a meeting place where people, groups and institutions can get together to share their vision of the world and their views and proposals to care for the planet and its sustainable development. Josefina Maestu, Director UNW- DPAC, will participate on 6 June in the presentation of Innova Aquae award and the Tree of Life initiatives received.
>> More information on the Smart Aquae CampusAvailable in Spanish

#Water&Development 9th Forum Water for Development

Date: 5 June 2014
Place: Auditorio Canal Foundation, Mateo Inurria 2, Madrid, Spain
Organizers: Canal Foundation

On World Environment Day, the Canal Foundation celebrates the 9th edition of its Water for Development Forum, an initiative promoted since 2006 aimed at offering a place to meet, exchange experiences and ideas, and involve key stakeholders to find solutions to water and development linkages. This year's discussion will focus on the relationship between water and energy at three main levels: globally, in the urban environment and in connection with international cooperation. Josefina Maestu, Director of UNW-DPAC, participates in this forum with the presentation "The general context of the water-energy nexus: World Water Development Report 2014".
>> More informationAvailable in Spanish

Latest videos

Join the Call to Action on Sanitation
United Nations. April 2014
This video focuses on the 2.5 billion people worldwide that lack access to basic sanitation. Recognizing that greater progress on sanitation is essential for fighting poverty and disease, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson has initiated, on behalf of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, a renewed effort to drive progress on sanitation and water goals towards the 2015 target date of the Millennium Development Goals and beyond. Share the video and join the conversation online using #Toilets4All #EndOpenDefecation.
>> More videos accessible from the UN water video library

You make the Decade! Who has joined the Water Decade campaign?
  • Water for life awareness happening

Joshua Feinberg has joined the ’Water for Life’ Decade's campaign. His aim is to set up a stand this summer in one of the high streets of Copenhagen, Denmark and hand out free water to passersby. The cup/bottle will have a small black cover with the ’Water for Life’ logo and website information, the intention is that when this is removed, people will be directed to the site where they can gain more information. He will target the days where it is really hot so as the people will appreciate the cup of free water more and perhaps realize how much access to free and clean water means to them.
>> Contact

  • Smart Aquae Campus and Aquae Campus Event

Smart Aquae Campus and Aquae Campus Event are two initiatives organized by the Aquae Foundation taking place on 5 and 6 June 2014. These two initiatives aim to protect and raise awareness on the environment and water issues, whilst promoting the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and citizen participation around these issues.
>> Contact

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