At today’s High-Level Panel on Water in the Post-2015 Development Agenda, the World Water Council is urging policy makers and water stakeholders from all nations to maintain the momentum for a dedicated Sustainable Development Goal for water in order to achieve water security in all domains. At the same time the Council is challenging the water community to focus attention on how such a goal will be implemented. A decade ago, water merited little attention and support from global decision-makers, business and opinion leaders. Today, the script is very different. In 2015, water was ranked as the greatest societal risk for the coming decade. The impacts of water on populations and societies worldwide demonstrate that water security is increasingly important as a pathway to sustainable development. As dialogue and negotiations for the Sustainable Development Goals enter the last mile, concentration and mobilization of all efforts are needed to make sure water is appreciated, not only as an end in itself, but as a means for sustainable development as a whole. 2015 is a vitally important year for the water community.
“The year 2015 is an opportunity the world cannot afford to miss: we must invent our water future together. Today, we gather in Korea at the 7th World Water Forum; in September, the United Nations General Assembly will adopt Sustainable Development Goals; and we will end the year debating a global climate agreement in Paris, in which water is to be recognized as a major factor to reach consensus. Our ability to build a water-secure future will depend upon our capacity to turn future challenges into opportunities. To succeed, we need the political decision-makers and the international community to come together to implement changes. There is no time to waste”, said Benedito Braga, President of the World Water Council.
Building on the 6th World Water Forum in Marseille, which identified a broad range of solutions, the 7th World Water Forum will establish Implementation Roadmaps and an Action Monitoring System as key outputs. These roadmaps will guide collective actions and keep track of progress on the goals formulated by all stakeholders working in each of the Forum’s 16 thematic areas. It is also expected that the Roadmaps will provide a clear picture of how to implement various aspects of a global Sustainable Development Goal on water and thereby create support for the achievement of the SDGs as a whole. Moreover, the Action Monitoring System will create concrete linkages between successive Forums in terms of catalyzing action, so that the momentum for positive change for the cause of water is continually increased.
The Implementation Roadmaps will be officially launched at the 7th World Water Forum during each thematic concluding session, and their succinct core messages will be compiled into a single output document from the Forum called the “Daegu-Gyeongbuk Implementation Commitment on Water.” This single commitment document will be signed at the closing ceremony of the 7th World Water Forum.