International Year of Water Cooperation

Water or rather the lack of it is always in the news and that is just about everywhere in the world. The International Year of Water Cooperation in 2013 was declared by the United Nations General Assembly back in December 2010. A day has been dedicated for the 2013 World Water Day and that will be 22 March 2013 with the them for Water Cooperation.

UN-Water has called upon UNESCO to lead the 2013 United Nationsun world water day 2013, International Year of WAter Cooperation, International Year of Water Cooperation, in particular because of the Organization’s unique multidisciplinary approach which blends the natural and social sciences, education, culture and communication. Given the intrinsic nature of water as a universal element, the United Nations International Year of Water Cooperation naturally would embrace and touch upon all these aspects.

The objective of this International Year is to raise awareness, both on the potential for increased cooperation, and on the challenges facing water management in light of the increase in demand for water access, allocation and services. The Year will highlight the history of successful water cooperation initiatives, as well as identify burning issues on water education, water diplomacy, transboundary water management, financing cooperation, national/international legal frameworks, and the linkages with the Millennium Development Goals. It also will provide an opportunity to capitalize on the momentum created at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), and to support the formulation of new objectives that will contribute towards developing water resources that are truly sustainable.

International World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). The United Nations General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day during the International Year of Water Cooperation.

Each year, World Water Day highlights a specific aspect of freshwater.

Kick-off Meeting of the International Year, UNESCO HQ, Paris, France (January 2013)

  • A symbolic event will be held at UNESCO HQ to kick-start the International Year of Water Cooperation. During this event, the best slogan for water cooperation will be announced and adopted at the presence of the UNESCO Director General, Ms Irina Bokova. The winner of the contest (for the best slogan) will be awarded during this event.

World Water Day, 22 March 2013

  • Celebrations for the WWD will take place around the world on the theme of water cooperation. The official UN international event will take place in The Netherlands, hosted by the Dutch Government and coordinated by UNESCO and UNECE with the support of UN-Water Members and Partners.
  • The WWD represents a culminating event within the International Year.

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