On the 18th of May, the World Water Council, in cooperation with Global Water Partnership and International Water Association, convened a side event at the Bonn Climate Change Conference entitled “Implementation of NDCs – Climate finance for water-related adaptation and mitigation action.”
Climate change manifests itself through water, impacting water resources first and foremost. Climate change also increases the intensity and frequency of water-related disasters, which exacerbate freshwater challenges. This is why water was identified as one of the key factors of adaptation in 93% of the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions that countries submitted to the UNFCCC secretariat. It is therefore crucial to start conceiving water as a “connector” and not only a “sector”.
In his introductory statement, Moulay Driss Hasnaoui, Head of the Water Resources Division, representing Mme Charafat Afilal, Minister Delegate for Water of Morocco, stressed this this idea by stating: “Solutions for water are the basis for solutions for [all] sectors, namely agriculture and food security, energy itself and renewable energy in particular, the tourism industry, and to the point where it can be said that that the majority of adaptation and mitigation initiatives cannot be effectively implemented without the use of water.”
The side event aimed at answering two main questions through a panel discussion, with the participation of Alexander Linke
of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Gareth Phillips
of the African Development Bank (AfDB), and Merylyn Hedger
of the Overseas Development Institute (ODI). Those questions were:
- What solutions to climate adaptation and mitigation come from water?
- How can we finance those actions to secure our future?
To address the first question, Eva Promes, project manager at the International Water Association, shared practical solutions for both adaptation and mitigation of carbon emissions. To introduce the second subject, Nicolas Delaunay, Resource Mobilisation and Partnership Manager at Global Water Partnership highlighted their work in supporting the preparation, planning processes and implementation for water-related projects and facilitate their financing.
World Water Council, Global Water Partnership and International Water Association are all members of the #ClimateIsWater initiative launched in late 2015 during the run-up to the COP21 in Paris, with the aim of strengthening the role of water within climate negotiations and harmonizing the voice of the water community. “#ClimateIsWater is a great new initiative to try and keep coordination and focus on the issue” since “sometimes the real and fundamental importance of it can get lost,” said Merylyn Hedger.
Since its confirmation as an Observer to the UNFCCC last November, this is the first time the World Water Council has participated in the Intersessional Climate Conference.
Listen to the recording of the event here