Bonn climate conference says global water priorities need funding to triple

Under the sustainable development goals that came out of the the United Nations’ Climate Change Conference (COP23) in Bonn, Germany the conference said financing the the water priorities in national climate plans that include an adaptation component submitted under the 2016 Paris Climate Change Agreement would need to triple to $295 billion a year.

Inn a statement the conference said: “Water tends to be a local issue but consequences of its unwise management have global impact. Around 40% of the world’s population will face water shortages by 2050, accelerating migration and triggering conflict, while some regions could lose up to 6% of their economic output, unless it is better managed.”

At the close of the conference the international water community co-signed a “nature based solution declaration” to promote the use of natural systems in managing water supplies.

Earlier in the conference fortnight, a side event, Water for Urban Resilience, explored new ways to mobilise urban and coastal communities, government officials and the private sector around building resilient, climate- and water-smart cities.

Key issues raised included:

  • the need to foster local partnerships, and work closely with key stakeholders to co-design and implement nature-based solutions;

  • Disaster Risk Reduction as an essential element of sustainable development;

  • circular economy approaches to water management;

  • traditional and nature-based solutions; and

  • the need to connect urban water policy to the climate negotiations.

The European Investment Bank said it would invest $75 million into a new $405 million programme by the Water Authority of Fiji. The programme is to strengthen the resilience of the islands’ water distribution and wastewater treatment following Cyclone Winston, the world’s second strongest storm ever recorded, which hit Fiji in February 2016.