The adoption of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015 put in motion the implementation of a global transformational framework aimed to generate political buy-in at the highest levels and drive a joint agenda of sustainable development and poverty eradication. Progress on SDG 6 on Clean Water and Sanitation was first reviewed at the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) in 2018 based on the UN-Water synthesis report on SDG 6. It found that while progress had been made, the global community was not on track to achieve the water targets by 2030. Given the crosscutting nature of water resources and the interdependent nature of the SDGs, the lack of progress on SDG 6 hinders progress towards meeting other SDG targets.
Mobilizing political leadership is necessary to accelerate climate-resilient systemic change at the scale and pace required and to help countries build back better as they emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. Boosting implementation of catalytic and integrated water-related SDGs, which contribute to healthier ecosystems and more resilient communities, strengthens gender-equal and socially inclusive development, fosters international green finance flows anchored in the climate agenda, and improves collaboration through an all-of-society approach.
To this end, decision-makers need multiple sources of sound data and evidence to establish effective, evidence-based policies and strategies. It requires a shift in understanding the paradigm of how water, climate, people and nature are interdependent. Decision-makers also need information on integrated and effective financial planning and intelligence on challenges and opportunities to finance transformation in all these areas simultaneously. Enabled by participative governance and collective action, such developments can serve to improve the performance of local and national systems and to ensure effective policy objectives and related costing, as well as coordinated investments of public funding across institutional silos, while attracting new finance. All these efforts need to converge for the greatest impact and to encourage leadership long-term, building momentum across key global platforms, where CoP26 and future CoP meetings are of critical importance for the global agenda.
The GWL Programme focuses on governments in low and middle-income countries implementing inclusive, climate resilient water policies and strategies. The GWL Programme is being implemented through a strategic collaboration between GWP, UNICEF, SWA, JMP, and WHO. The programme runs from May 2021 until August 2024