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Water at the core of sustainable development

The Intergovernmental Panel on Water was established by the Government of Mexico to ensure that water issues are properly addressed in international sustainable development fora

1st June 2015
Sponsored feature

Water at the core of sustainable development

The Intergovernmental Panel on Water was established by the Government of Mexico to ensure that water issues are properly addressed in international sustainable development fora

By ANEAS
(Asociación Nacional de Empresas de Agua y Saneamiento de México)

The Intergovernmental Panel on Water, an initiative of the Government of Mexico presented by President Enrique Peña Nieto at the 69th UN General Assembly in New York, USA, raises the idea of a space for developing new adaptation projects, which will enable countries to be better prepared for the impact of increasingly severe weather events.

This proposal is consistent with the work undertaken for the Post-2015 Agenda on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which also considers, for the first time, the establishment of an objective solely dedicated to water.

Water is a cross-cutting element essential for development. It is present in every human social and productive activity as well as in the surrounding environment; it is the core of sustainable development.

The water dimension has not been adequately addressed at international fora, particularly regarding climate change. Access to water resources is not only essential for peaceful coexistence, but also a key issue for developing nations.

Mexico created a comprehensive and multisectoral ‘Special Programme’ under the National Water Plan (2013-2018), which is evaluated every two years during implementation.

It is based on six goals to advance towards water security: strengthening integrated and sustainable water management; increasing water security against droughts and floods; improving access to drinking water, sewerage and sanitation services; increasing technical, scientific and technological capacities; securing water for agricultural irrigation, energy, industry, tourism and other economic and financial activities in a sustainable manner; and consolidating Mexico’s international engagement on water issues.

Currently, Mexico chairs the Intergovernmental Council of UNESCO’s International Hydrological Programme. The aim is to implement science and technology as a basis for public policies’ development, through an Intergovernmental Panel on Water.

During the 15th Ibero-American Water Directors Conference, a statement was signed in solidarity with the initiative, in which water acquires political relevance in the global arena. This initiative sets water security as a priority within the agenda of international organisations and bodies in light of the Post-2015 discussion.

Meanwhile, Mexico submitted at the Conference of the Parties (COP-20) a proposal for the inclusion of the topic of water as a key factor for adaptation – reducing vulnerability and building resilience.