GWP Addresses Urban Water Issues at India Water Week

Water security is under intense pressure in many urban areas, and the very nature of urbanisation contributes to water stress situations both from a quantity and quality perspective. GWP – in collaboration with India Water Partnership and WAPCOS Limited – addresses urban water issues in a daylong workshop on Friday 16 January at India Water Week 2015.

The factors behind water stress in urban areas are mainly due to rapid population growth, changing life styles, poor waste water management and sanitation, as well as competing demands on the resource.

Globally, more people live in urban areas than in rural areas, with 54 percent of the world’s population residing in urban areas in 2014. Asia remains mostly rural, however with 48 percent of population living in urban areas. Asia is also urbanising faster than the other regions and is projected to be 64 percent urban by 2050.

In India, the total population is 1.2 billion. Of these, more than 400 million people live in urban areas. According to the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations, projections predict a total population of 1.6 billion in 2050, where the urban percentage is steadily increasing. From 32.7 percent urban population, the rise is estimated to go to 37 percent by 2025 and 50 percent by 2050 (World Urbanization Prospects 2014). Delhi is already the second highest urban agglomeration in the world with 25 million inhabitants just after Tokyo.

IUWM for Improved Water Management

Today most planners don’t realize the importance of holistic and integrative approaches that show the interrelationship of economic activities together with the need to break silos between sectors. Important social disparities in terms of access to basic services call for more inclusive approaches. Local stakeholders are now more and more willing to participate in planning and decision making processes, paving the way for a new “water democracy.”

Given the increasing challenges, there is a need to explore new ways of managing water systems. GWP promotes Integrated Urban Water Management (IUWM), which is an innovative framework for interventions over the entire water cycle and a reconsideration of the way water is used (and reused). The main objective of the session at India Water Week is to contribute to an improved management of water and waste water in urban areas of India by introducing the IUWM approach.

For media enquiries, please contact GWP Writer & Media Officer Eva Blässar,

Photo: View of Delhi from Jama Masjid