A continuation of a fragmented approach will be disastrous for our planet. More clarity is needed, however, on how Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) can best be implemented as a set of principles and as a process. This requires an expansion rather than a narrowing of views and approaches, argues the Global Water Partnership in a new Perspectives Paper, “Increasing Water Security – A Development Imperative”. The paper draws on country experiences around the world and points out keys for success in moving forward with the adaptive process of IWRM for sustainable development.
The recommendations in the paper do not directly address the challenge of delivering services for water supply, sanitation, and irrigation. Rather, they focus on the fundamental process of improving the management of water resources that lies at the heart of increasing water security:
- Ensuring the availability of adequate and reliable water resources of acceptable quality, to underpin water service provision for all social and economic activity in a manner that is environmentally sustainable;
- Mitigating water-related risks such as flood, drought and pollution; and
- Addressing the conflicts that may arise from disputes over shared waters, especially in situations of growing stress.
This Paper is intended to galvanise discussion within the larger water and development community. Feedback will contribute into a GWP Technical Committee Background Paper on how to increase water security.
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