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World Water Week Daily 25 August 2015

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STOCKHOLMwaterfrontworld water week daily | TUESDAY <strong>25</strong> AUGUST | <strong>2015</strong>President Christopher J. Loeak of Marshall Islands<strong>Week</strong> opens with callfor climate changereality-checkTEXT | andreas karlsson PHOTO | thomas henriksonThree heads of state participated in theopening ceremony yesterday, with perhapsthe most emotional statement beingdelivered by President ChristopherJ. Loeak of Marshall Islands.Coming from one of only four fullatoll nations in the world, consistingof more than a thousand islands sittingat an average of two metres abovesea level, President Loeak addressedpublished by stockholm international water institutethe auditorium with a deep and verypersonal concern for climate change.“There is no issue in the world that iscloser to my heart than the issue ofwater. We are a small country quiteliterally contemplating afuture where we are beingwiped off the worldmap. Yet, as the leader ofmy country I cannot lookmy people in the eyesand in good consciencesay that everything will be ok, whenI know the world continues to traveldown a very destructive path.”President Loeak said that water isnot only surrounding his country, butalso sustaining its economy, with fishingbeing the main source of income.As flooding occurs more and morefrequently, it is therefore, accordingto President Loeak, a cruel irony thatthe water that the Marshallese peopleworship, is now threatening theirvery existence.As a direct result of their vulnerablesituation, Marshall Islands is in manyways at the forefront when it comes tosustainable solutions, working withan extensive energy conversion planand having introduced a hundred percent solar-based energy supply.“Nowhere in the world will you finda more optimistic people than in MarshallIslands. We are not your stereotypeislanders, sitting and waiting forcoconuts to fall on our heads. We arededicated to changing our prospectsfor the future. But we cannot do thisby ourselves, and that is whyI urge you all to join us,” PresidentLoeak said.Following his address, and comingfrom an equally urgent yet very differentwater situation, Prime MinisterAbdulla Ensour of Jordan spokeabout the extreme water scarcitythat plagues his country. That, hereminded, combined with a refugeeinflux that per capita is second onlyto Lebanon in the world, puts hugestress on the country. Prime MinisterEnsour therefore called for a new wayof classifying countries economically,incorporating issues such as the onesJordan is experiencing.“No issue is closer tomy heart than theissue of water”


TUESDAY: WORLD WATER WEEK DAILYYesterday evening, Stockholm <strong>Water</strong> Prize LaureateRajendra Singh gathered delegates for the <strong>World</strong> <strong>Water</strong>Walk for Peace.“This type of walk raises water awareness so that youngpeople can learn how to pay respect to water, love it andunderstand the relation between human health and waterhealth,” he said before marching off with a large crowdchanting in chorus: “water for life, life for water!”Alexis MorgonWHAT’S THEVALUE OFWATER?Companies were urged toincrease their efforts at evaluatingthe business impactsof water at the Revealingthe value of water sessionyesterday.“Not enough companiesare quantifying or talkingabout how water is impactingtheir businesses,” said AlexisMorgon of WWF International.“In the stewardship space,we need to focus on how wateris perceived and identifythe value others attach to it.Understanding how othersderive value is really criticalto the notion of water stewardship,”he added.Speakers outlined thebenefits of, and obstacles to,attaching values to water usein a series of projects and researchinitiatives in Australia,Bolivia, Peru and the US. Arecurring theme in all fourcases was the need for commonbenchmarks to ensureaccuracy and comparabilityin water value measurement.SDG INDICATORSEXPLAINEDA month from now, thegoals and targets of theSustainable DevelopmentGoals (SDGs) will beadopted. The necessaryindicators for fulfillingthem however, will not bein place until March nextyear, as they will beadopted separately bythe UN StatisticalCommission.The process behindestablishing the indicatorswas explained duringa session yesterday byFabiola Riccardini from theInter-agency and ExpertGroup on SustainableDevelopment Goal Indicators.The delicate processwill set indicators to beused for the next 15 years,as part of the 2030 Agendafor Sustainable Development,so there isa needto get things right fromthe beginning.“We will be able to makeminor adjustments, butfor the sake of consistencyover time we cannot goabout changing too much”,said Riccardini.She also said, contraryto what many seem tobelieve, that there is nolimitation to one singleindicator per target. The aimis to have as few indicatorsas possible, preferablyincluding multipurposeindicators, but if needbe there may be multipleindicators for certaintargets, according toRiccardini.NUMBER OF THE DAY52NUMBEROF COUNTRIESUNDER WATER STRESSWATER STRESS = LESS THAN1,700M 3 /CAPITA/YEAR(AQUASTAT, FAO)BEST WATER IDEA– VOTE NOW!Have you voted for the best water idea? If not, you stillhave time. As part of the <strong>World</strong> <strong>Water</strong> <strong>Week</strong> jubilee,SIWI has launched a campaign, presenting 10 waterinnovations that have a direct impact on our lives.“We received more than 150 suggestions from people allover the world, and the 10 most popular are up for the finalvote. So far almost 2,000 votes have been cast online.Going vegan is by far the most popular, followed by rainwaterharvesting and the waterless toilet,” saysSanna Gustafsson, digital outreach at SIWI.Yesterday, police officers Katarina Stenbäck-Grim andStefan Lundh took the opportunity to vote for theirfavourite ideas.“I chose rainwater harvesting, it makes a lot of sense,”Stenbäck-Grim said.The ideas are on display at the jubilee activity areawhere you can cast your vote. You can also visitwww.worldwaterweek.org/bestwaterideasExhibition in the jubilee activity areaPolice officer KatarinaStenbäck-Grim castsher vote


THE GUARDIAN GUEST COLUMNBY KATHERINE PURVISAlistair WynessTRANSPAReNCY,RECYCLING TOP OIL andGAS DISCUSSIONSTEXT | nick chipperfield PHOTO | THOMAS HENRIKSONThe need for greater transparencyand challengesinvolved in water recyclingdominated discussions atthe Oil and gas sector watermanagement: from nowto 2030 session, convenedby the IPIECA, an umbrellaorganization representingthe interests of the oil andgas industry.“We’re starting to makea lot more informationavailable to the publicdomain; we’re talkingabout where the [waterresource] risks are andhow we manage thoserisks. I expect there’ll bemore information madeavailable in the future,and that’s what we need towork on,” said Alistair Wyness,Chair, IPIECA’s <strong>Water</strong>Working Group.Indicating that costs,rather than technologicalbarriers are bluntingefforts to increase there-use and recycling ofwater, Wyness stressed theimportance of technology.“We – and the industryas a whole – are workingon making recycling watermore cost-effective. It’sstill very, very challenging,but I firmly believe intechnology, and that it bewill technological developmentthat will makerecycling cost-effective,”he said.Wyness also underlinedthe value of local communityinvolvement as wellas having the appropriateregulatory framework inplace alongside improvedreporting.A point echoed byMarielle Weikel fromConservation Internationalwho described howcompanies in the US areincreasingly looking atrisk associated with waterresource management.“Companies are increasinglymaking progress intracking use intensity,reporting and talking publicallyabout water management,”Weikel said.This process will supportbetter understandingof the risks associatedwith water sources beingdegraded, according toWeikel, and looks sets tocreate opportunities to developperformance targets,which will in turn result inmore efficient use of water,and help companies managereputational risk.ENDING OPEN DEFECATIONIS ABOUT MORE THANPROVIDING TOILETSAround the world, 946 million people still go tothe toilet outside. Nine in 10 people who practiseopen defecation – which can contaminate drinkingwater and contribute to the spread of water-bornediseases – live in rural areas.There has been a huge global effort to eliminatethe practice since 1990, according to data releasedby the WHO/Unicef Joint Monitoring Programmeearlier this year. In Ethiopia, for example, theproportion of the population practising opendefecation decreased from 92 per cent in 1990 to29 per cent in <strong>2015</strong>.But at current reduction rates, it is estimatedthat open defecation will still not be eliminatedamong the poorest in rural areas by 2030 –one ofthe targets of the sustainable development goals.Yesterday, Katrina Charles from the Universityof Oxford presented her research arguing that notevery household needs its own toilet. Her researchin eight informal settlements in Kigali (Rwanda),Kisumu (Kenya) and Kampala (Uganda) showedthat shared sanitation could be part of the solutionto provide clean toilet facilities to people in developingcountries.This may be of particular interest to people inIndia, where the government has set a goal to makethe country open defecation-free by 2019 as part ofits national Swachh Bharat (Clean India) Mission.It may not be as simple as making sure everyonehas access to sanitation facilities, though. Millionsof people in India continue to defecate in the openeven if they have a toilet, according to an article inThe Independent newspaper this weekend. Newlatrines are rejected by communities due to thesocial stigma around the build-up and disposal ofhuman waste. Some people would rather wait tosave up for a toilet with a pit big enough to onlybe emptied every decade, rather than accept agovernment toilet with a small pit – and continueto go outdoors in the meantime.Breaking down community barriers to toiletuse is surely just as much of a challenge asproviding adequate sanitation facilities, and Ilook forward to hearing about behaviour changeinitiatives this week.Katherine Purvis is a writer and editor, specializingin water, climate and environment issues.


JORDAN SEEKS LONG-TERM SOLUTIONS TO BOOST RESILIENCETEXT |görrel espelund PHOTO | THOMAS HENRIKSONThe numbers speak for themselves:In addition to Jordan’s population ofjust under 7 million people, 3.5 millionrefugees have come, and stayed, overthe years. This makes it the countrywith the second largest refugeepopulation per capita in the world.Combined with Jordan being one ofthe most water scarce countries inthe world, it puts huge pressure onits recourses.In his opening address yesterday,the Prime Minister of Jordan, AbdullaEnsour, highlighted the challengesposed by the refugee crises. Later in theday, Mohammad Aldwairi from Jordan’sMinistry of <strong>Water</strong> and Irrigation,elaborated on the social impact ofMohammad Aldwairithe migration. More than 80 per centof the refugees from Syria do not live incamps but in the community, pushingexisting infrastructure to the limits.“The refugee crisis has increased thedemand for water by 35 per cent in thenorth and by 21 per cent in the countryas a whole,” Aldwairi said.And though there has been adequateresponse from humanitarian agencies,there is limited understanding of thehost country’s concern, he added,pointing out the need for long-termsolutions to boost resilience.“We started developing a nationalresilience plan and a refugee responseplan, but it became clear that weneeded one master plan to includeeverything. The world has respondedto the humanitarian crisis, but whenit comes to rehabilitating our waternetworks and our pumping stations,we are not happy.”world water week voicesWHAT IS THE MOST URGENT WATER CHALLENGE IN YOUR COUNTRY?Maria Markova, StockholmJunior <strong>Water</strong> Prizefinalist, Russia“I’d say that pollutioncaused by ageing oiland gas infrastructureis one of the biggestwater-related threatsin Russia right now– especially in theBarents Sea.”Taeko Yokota, Office ofUNSG’s Special Envoy onDisaster Risk & <strong>Water</strong>,Japan“An often neglectedissue is the secureprovision of water andsanitation services inthe wake of naturaldisasters. We need tothink about this beforedisasters hit.”Kamal Ahmed, UTM,Pakistan“Our major problemsare an arid climateand lack of access toclean water; as well asour rapidly decliningground water reservesare also impactingfood security.”Malehlabathe Matsoso,Department of <strong>Water</strong> &Sanitation, South Africa“Our main challengeis creating awarenessand understandingof the importanceof saving water, andeducating people aboutthe implications ofdrought and climatechange.”Tobias Omufwoko,WASH Africa, Kenya“Access to WASH;we won’t achieve ourSDGs, or universalcoverage, unless weaccelerate water serviceand scale. We needto act faster andmore broadly – notin pockets.”Kristy Krautler, MurrayDarling Basin Authority,AustraliaC = 55,86M = 80,86Y = 0K = 0“Our biggest problemis sharing waterbetween people,agriculture andthe environment.We’re working toraise awareness thatimproving watermanagement benefitsall users.”Digital updatesDon’t forget to check in with us fordigital updates throughout the day,and engage with us on social media.programme.worldwaterweek.org@siwi_water#wwweek<strong>World</strong><strong>Water</strong><strong>Week</strong>InStockholmStockholm International<strong>Water</strong> InstituteMediaHubsiwi.org/mediahubTune in each morning!worldwaterweek.org/dailysplashstockholm waterfront daily • 24-28 AUGUST, <strong>2015</strong> • CIRCULATION: 1,000STOCKHOLM INTERNATIONAL WATER INSTITUTEBox 101 87 | Visiting Address: Linnégatan 87ASE-100 55, Stockholm, SwedenTel: +46 8 121 360 00 | www.siwi.orgPublisher: Torgny HolmgrenSIWI EDITORIAL STAFFEditor: Victoria Engstrand-NeacsuGraphic designer: Elin IngblomWORLD WATER WEEK DAILY EDITORIAL STAFFNick Chipperfield, Görrel Espelund andAndeas KarlssonPhotography: Thomas Henrikson

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