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What is Sustainable Development?

Background & Preparations
UNESCO at Johannesburg
Alliances & Partnerships

UNESCO's Priorities
Educating for Sustainability
Scientific Dimensions
Ethical Principles
Cultural Dimensions
Media and ICTs

Some Action Themes
Biological Diversity
Fresh Water
Local and indigenous knowledge



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Home > Fresh Water - Updated: 22-08-2002 7:57 am
‘Water resources and ecosystems’ is the principal priority in UNESCO’s Natural Sciences Sector in 2002-2003, reflecting the widely held view that freshwater resources and their integrated management is one of the most critical environment and development issues of the coming decades.  
The primary focus for UNESCO’s work on freshwater resources is the International Hydrological Programme (IHP), with a long term objective of developing approaches for sound water management. In its present phase (IHP-VI, 2002-2007), the focus is on ‘Water interactions: systems at risk and social challenges’ and on a people-oriented approach to the management and development of water resources. Priority themes include: Global changes and water resources; Integrated watershed and aquifer dynamics; Land habitat hydrology; Water and society; Water education and training. There are also two cross-cutting themes: Developing understanding of hydrological variability and similarity across different regions (FRIEND, Flow Regimes from International Experimental and Network Data) and an integrated long-term programme with process hydrology undertaken at larger drainage basin scales (HELP, Hydrology for the Environment, Life and Policy). more

Urban Development and Freshwater Resources in Small Historic Coastal Cities
Joint project of MOST, IHP and CSI. >> More

World Water Assessment@
UN-wide assessment of freshwater resources is underway, which will culminate in the publication of the first World Water Development Report in early 2003. >> More

UNESCO and Water: Events at the Johannesburg Summit (Johannesburg, South Africa; 25-08-2002 10:00 pm - 03-09-2002 10:00 pm )
At the World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, 26 August-4 September), the Water Dome will provide the focus for a series of activities and displays on the World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) -- the United Nations system-wide effort to assess the world’s water resources. More

Biosphere Reserves and Freshwater Ecosystems
A fair number of the sites within the World Network of Biosphere Reserves are actively concerned with interactions between freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems and with addressing issues related to the rational use of water resources.
>> More info   >> Go to website

Coastal Regions and Small Islands
‘Freshwater’ is one of the themes within the Coastal Regions and Small Islands (CSI) platform
>> More info   >> Go to website

Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems (EOLSS)
A number of the 200 subject themes of EOLSS are concerned with water-related issues, including water science and technology (history and future), modeling of water resource systems and its role in planning, water quality and heath, water pollution, water quality standards, groundwater, limnology, unconventional water systems.
>> More info   >> Go to website

IGCP Project on Quaternary Glaciation in Asia
Among the ongoing co-operative projects within the International Geological Correlation Programme (IGCP) is that on ‘Glaciation and Reorganization of Asia’s Drainage’.
>> More info   >> Go to website

International Hydrological Programme (IHP)
UNESCO’s intergovernmental programme on water resources, with a current (2002-2007) focus on ‘Water interactions: systems at risk and social challenges’.
>> More info   >> Go to website

International Year of Freshwater (2003)
UNESCO is a lead agency for the International Year, which provides an opportunity to promote the principles and practices of integrated water resources management.
>> More info   >> Go to website

Ramsar Convention on Wetlands
The Convention on Wetlands, which was signed in Ramsar (Iran) in 1971, provides one of the principal international instruments for the conservation of wetlands.
>> More info   >> Go to website

Ramsar-MAB Co-operation
Joint web site reflecting co-operative programme and shared-contiguous sites between the Ramsar Convention and UNESCO-MAB.
>> More info   >> Go to website

World Heritage Convention
Outstanding inland water locations feature in a number of the sites inscribed on the World Heritage List.
>> More info   >> Go to website

World Water Assessment
For development, capacity-building and the environment
>> More info   >> Go to website

World Water Forum
The Third World Water Forum will be held from 16-23 March 2003 at various venues (Kyoto, Shiga, Osaka) in the Yoda River Basin in Japan. The forum will include a ministerial conference and a water fair/festival consisting of a series of water-related events.
>> More info   >> Go to website

The Ethics of Freshwater Use - by UNESCO

WEHAB: Framework for Action on Water and Sanitation (2002) - by
One of five thematic papers on the WEHAB initiative proposed by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan as a contribution to the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD). More

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Websites (11)
Publications (6)
Events (1)

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