Jordan participates in handing over UN report on water

15-03-2018 07:29 AM

Ammon News - AMMONNEWS - Deputizing for Prime Minister Hani Al-Mulki, Jordan’s permanent representative to the United Nations (UN), Sima Bahouth late Wednesday, participated at the ceremony of handing over outcome of the High-Level Panel on water's final report to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

The report which came under the title, "Making Every Drop Count: An Agenda for Water Action" calls for a fundamental shift in the way the world manages water so that the Sustainable Development Goals can be achieved.

Addressing the meeting, Bahouth said that water scarcity is an issue of top priority in Jordan, since the country ranks as the world's third water-poorest country .

She also stressed that water scarcity is a core issue and should be addressed at all levels, calling at the same time for joint action to draw national and regional plans and strategies to face the challenges of climate change, drought, as well as the impact of refugees and displacement on water security, especially as the Kingdom is facing grave shortages of water due to hosting more than 1.3 million Syrian refugees.

Bahouth reiterated Jordan's commitment to work with the international community to build partnerships on water as a mean to achieve peace, especially in the Middle East.

The report called for a fundamental shift in the way the world manages water so that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Goal 6 on ensuring availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all, can be achieved.

The panel, which was formed in 2016 for an initial period of two years, is advocating for evidence-based policies and innovative approaches at the global, national and local level to make water management as well as water and sanitation services attractive for investment and more disaster-resilient.

It called for policies that will allow for at least a doubling of investment in water infrastructure in the next five years.

The report also highlighted the essential need for partnerships between Governments, communities, the private sector and researchers.

In addition to Hani Mulki, members of the panel include Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, Mauritius’ President (Co-Chair), Enrique Pena Nieto, Mexico’s President (Co-Chair), Malcolm Turnbull, Australia’s Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh’s Prime Minister, Janos ?der, Hungary’s President, Mark Rutte, Netherlands’ Prime Minister, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski Godard, Peru’s President, Jacob Zuma, South Africa’s President, Macky Sall, Senegal’s President, Emomali Rahmon, Tajikistan’s President, and Han Seung-soo, Special Advisor and former Prime Minister of the Republic of Korea.

Guterres said "It is my deep belief that water is a matter of life and death," UN Secretary-General Ant?nio Guterres commented upon receiving the report on Wednesday, noting that 60 per cent of human body is water.

He added that water-related natural disasters are occurring more frequently and becoming more and more dangerous everywhere, which means "water is indeed a matter of life and death" and "must be an absolute priority in everything we do." "The report is a wake-up call to all of us to find and implement solutions to the global water crisis, he further explained." According to the report, 40 per cent of the world’s people are being affected by water scarcity. If not addressed, as many as 700 million could be displaced by 2030 in search for water. More than two billion people are compelled to drink unsafe water and more than 4.5 billion do not have safely managed sanitation services It also noted that women and girls suffer disproportionately when water and sanitation are lacking, affecting health and often restricting work and education opportunities.

Some 80 per cent of wastewater is discharged untreated into the environment and water-related disasters account for 90 per cent of the 1,000 most devastating natural disasters since 1990, the report warned.

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