water diplomacy

August 18, 2010

The U.S. State Department attempts to address the crying need for cleaner water through grants and other aid programs to developing nations. Each year the department issues a report, in adherence to the Water for the Poor Act of 2005, detailing its efforts.

The resolution urges states and international organizations to provide financial and technological assistance to help developing countries "scale up efforts to provide safe, clean, accessible and affordable water and sanitation for all."

A long outstanding proposal to recognize the right to water as a basic universal human right is threatening to split the world's rich and poor nations. Opposition to the proposal is coming mostly from Western nations, says Maude Barlow, a global water advocate and a founder of the Canada-based Blue Planet Project.

As the United Nations takes stock of progress 10 years after the Millennium Development Goals were created, one expert says a hard look needs to be taken at what has been and can be accomplished.

Throughout the world, few things are more precious than a safe and abundant water supply. A country that can help another nation improve the availability and quality of water is likely to win friends, regardless of how the respective governments get along.

SINGAPORE – Uneasy about relying on water imported from Malaysia and determined to sustain its booming growth, Singapore devotes much effort to innovative water planning. The Singapore River has become a giant reservoir, rainstorm runoff is carefully collected, used water is treated and recycled, and the island nation’s five million residents are expected to be stingy in their water consumption.

Participants will assess implementation of the goals set by the UN for its Water For Life Decade (2005-2015)...Addressing the conference, Tajik President Emomali Rahmon proposed designating 2012 the Year of Water Diplomacy...

But the countries that share the Nile River basin – Uganda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo – are tired of Egypt, and to a lesser extent Sudan, dictating the terms of the river water’s usage.