Decade’s WeeklyUnited Nations, Water for Life, UN Water
 News from the International Decade for Action ’Water for Life’ 2005-2015
  Issue 54. 28 November 2014 
This week in focus  Editor’s note

Welcome to the Decade’s Weekly! Every week we bring you the latest news from the International Decade for Action ’Water for Life’ 2005-2015. Please feel free to share this newsletter. You can also access this newsletter online.

Tip of the week

The third UN-Water Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-Water (GLAAS) report launched this week highlights the benefits of investing in water and sanitation. Despite clear benefits for human development, many countries seem to allocate insufficient resources to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target for sanitation and drinking-water. Why should this be so?

>> Visit the section dedicated to financing water on the Decade’s website


Launch of UN Water and Sanitation Best Practices Platform!

After a Decade of learning, many methods and approaches have been implemented to achieve the water and sanitation targets of the Millennium Development Goals. Now, at the end of the Water for Life Decade, we have access to a collection of best practices that will be important for the Post-2015 period. The UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC) has developed this best practices platform to facilitate examining successfully applied practices and to provide links to useful practices and instructive organizations. The platform enables search by region, country and theme.

These best practices have followed a screening process which includes the Water for Life UN-Water Best Practices Award and UN-Water Zaragoza Annual Conferences. Additional best practices will be added as we continue working with UN agencies and programmes and Member States. We take this opportunity to thank all participants and congratulate you for your hard work!

>> Visit the Best Practices Platform

In the news Forthcoming events
#UNWaterPublications Bimonthly Publications Review 24 is Out!

Every two months, this review collates publications produced by United Nations agencies and programmes on issues related to water and sanitation. This edition brings together 22 UN publications from a range of water and sanitation issues including: financing, demographics, water utilities, natural resources, the human right to water and sanitation, WASH in schools, etc.
>> Bimonthly Publications Review 24PDF document

#FoodEnergyEnvironment Launch of the Food, Energy, Environment and Water (FE²W) Network

UNESCO International Hydrological Programme (IHP) and the Australian National University (ANU)-UNESCO Chair in Water Economics and Transboundary Water Governance officially launched the Food, Energy, Environment and Water (FE²W) Network on 26 November 2014 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris. FE²W is a network of individuals from academia, the private and public sectors and civil society, who wish to effectively respond to the challenges, risks and opportunities of achieving food, water and energy security while sustaining the environment and enhancing livelihoods, today and into the future. It provides decision-makers at all levels with the knowledge to effectively manage the tradeoffs between the security of food, energy, environment and water.
>> More information >> FE²W website

#Environment&Basins 1st International Environment Forum for Basin Organizations

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP), in cooperation with the International Network of Basin Organizations (INBO), organised the 1st International Environment Forum for Basin Organizations in Nairobi, Kenya, from 26-28 November 2014. The event brought together managers of river basin organizations, international financial institutions, secretariats of multilateral environmental agreements and UN agencies to share their experiences regarding the implementation of environmental obligations and management of trade-offs concerning the utilisation of water bodies, their associated habitats and ecosystems. The forum discussed themes related to water quality and ecosystem health, the water-energy-food nexus and adaptation to climate change, environmental laws and regulations, and institutional challenges. It included a high-level segment with Ministers and heads of river basin organizations on the way forward for the sustainable governance of freshwater basins.
>> Forum website

#DamSafety UNECE supports strengthening of dam safety in Central Asia

Representatives from key authorities and stakeholders from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Azerbaijan along with representatives of international organizations and experts from the Russian Federation gathered in Bishkek on 11-12 November 2014 to participate in a regional meeting on dam safety. The meeting was organised by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) as part of the implementation of the third phase of the project "Capacity-building for cooperation on dam safety in Central Asia". In addition to exchanging experiences, participants agreed on the project’s work plan for 2015.
>> More information

From the Decade’s Programmes
Participation of UNW-DPAC in the Documentary series "Invisible Water"

Co-produced by the Water Promotion and Management Foundation, the Platform of Scientific Dissemination of the Complutense University of Madrid and the Spanish Television, this series on hydrogeology and underground water counts with the special collaboration of UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC). Josefina Maestu, UNW-DPAC Director, participates in the chapters "Underground Water Uses and Management" and "Shared Water: Water solidarity".
>> Access the "Underground Water Uses and Management" chapter(min. 30:58)

#WorldDisabilitiesDay International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2014 focuses on sustainable development and technology

Date: 3 December 2014
Place: Worldwide

The International Day of Persons with Disabilities was proclaimed in 1992 by the United Nations General Assembly to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities. Access to safe and clean water and sanitation is a basic right of all people, including people with disabilities, the denial of which can have serious implications on their health, dignity and well-being. Under the theme "Sustainable development: the promise of technology", the focus of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities this year is on the role of technology in disaster risk reduction and emergency responses, creating enabling working environments and disability-inclusive sustainable development goals.
>> More information
>> Events at UN Headquarters

#ClimateChange UN Climate Change Conference 2014

Date: 1-12 December 2014
Place: Lima, Peru
Organisers: United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC), Government of Peru

The 20th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 10th session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol will gather to assess progress in dealing with climate change. In this framework, the first round of the newly established multilateral assessment will be conducted, which offers the opportunity to engage all countries to assess how developed countries are implementing actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Different UN agencies and programmes participate in the conference and organize different water-related activities and side-events.
>> Overview schedulePDF document
>> More information

#WaterLaw Workshop on the role of legal and scientific expertise in the avoidance and settlement of water law disputes

Date: 5 December 2014
Place: Queen Mary University of London, United Kingdom
Organisers: United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and Queen Mary University London

This workshop will address the different contributions made by legal and scientific expertise, how those contributions may (or may not) be combined, the difficulties encountered when doing so and the good practices that have emerged. The focus will be on the interaction between the different approaches and their joint impact on dispute avoidance. The workshop will be held back-to-back with the 4th meeting of the Implementation Committee of the Water Convention (London, 4 December 2014).
>> Draft agendaPDF document
>> More information
>> 4th meeting of the Implementation Committee

#WaterAllocation Seminar: Cycles and Spirals of Justice in Water Allocation Decision Making

Date: 4 December 2014
Place: Delft, the Netherlands
Organisers: UNESCO Institute for Water Education (UNESCO-IHE)

The seminar will present a conceptual framework that helps make sense of the relationship between justice and injustice in the context of water allocation decision making. It describes how justice and injustice are part of a cycling continuum of ’justice for whom?’ and how this plays out in a multilevel system where the problem of scale can surface.
>> More information

You make the Decade! Who has joined the Water Decade campaign?
  • For roads and water, recovering the future

Liceo Taller San Miguel, Pereira, Colombia implements the project "For roads and water, recovering the future," a recuperation of the wetland Danapure and of two streams: La María y Lavapiés. The Liceo Taller San Miguel has also been developing a number of environmental projects for more than 10 years. The Liceo has joined the Water for Life Decade’s campaign and includes the Decade’s logo on its website.
>> Contact

  • Climate-Smart Agriculture Youth Network

Climate-Smart Agriculture Youth Network (CSAYN) is a group of volunteers who have strong interest in Climate-Smart Agriculture and the environment. Its main goal is to educate the youth and people living with disabilities on climate-smart agriculture practices, increasing agricultural productivity, and promoting climate change adaptation and mitigation. CSAYN has joined the Water for Life Decade’s campaign.
>> Contact

  • A Community Dialogue: Water is a Human Right

The California Central Valley Journey for Justice is a small membership organization that advocates and educates on social justice issues. It has celebrated the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights for several years. This year, they have chosen the theme of "water" to bring awareness on the human rights aspect of all human beings being guaranteed a right to water. The event will take place on Saturday, 13 December 2014. The California Central Valley Journey for Justice has joined the Water for Life Decade’s campaign and the logo will be used to advertise the event.
>> Contact

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