Source: Small Island Developing States
27 November 2018: The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) sought to engage the support of Geneva-based diplomats for its hydrological monitoring and data collection activities at a half-day event at its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The meeting, which brought together representatives of the permanent missions and international organizations under the name, ‘Coalition for Water Data and Peace,’ highlighted the importance of reliable and up-to-date hydrological data for conflict resolution and trust building over sharing of water resources.
The event showcased various knowledge projects implemented or led by the WMO, including: the WMO HydroHub, a platform for sharing knowledge and expertise; the Global Hydrological Status and Outlook System (HydroSOS) for monitoring and predicting global freshwater hydrological conditions; and the World Water Data Initiative (WWDI), a global effort launched by the Government of Australia and now led by the WMO to promote hydrometry as a basis for efforts towards achieving SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation).
The world will only achieve sustainability if there is proper management of water resources.
The meeting follows on from a recommendation in the 2017 report of the Global High-Level Panel on Water and Peace, which calls for strengthening knowledge-based and data-driven decision making and cooperation. The WMO is seeking to raise awareness of the importance of reliable hydrological data in peace building and sustainable development, as a basis for efforts towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas announced that the WMO’s reform process is giving greater attention to water resources, and that the agency is stepping up its cooperation with humanitarian agencies dealing with floods and drought. He argued for increasing investment in weather, climate and water services, noting that that climate change is affecting rainfall patterns and water availability.
Other speakers at the event included Danilo Turk, Chair of the Global High-Level Panel on Water and Peace, Australian Ambassador Sally Mansfield, and François Münger, Director of the Geneva Water Hub, a joint project of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the University of Geneva.
Mansfield warned that water scarcity in Australia would result in price increases for its agricultural products, many of which are exported around the world. Turk stressed that the world will only achieve sustainability if there is proper management of water resources.
The meeting was organized with the support of the Government of Germany. [WMO Press Release] [Event Notice] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on WWDI]