UNESCO’s IHP newsletter July 2013

The International Hydrological Programme (IHP) of UNESCO is pleased to launch this inaugural issue of its Newsletter, with the kind support of the Secretariat of the Netherlands National Committee IHP-HWRP. This initiative aims to strengthen knowledge sharing and increase awareness of our activities amongst Members States and the UNESCO Water Family. We would welcome suggestions and feedback.



IHP logoIHP News − e-Newsletter of the International Hydrological Programme (IHP) of UNESCO

July 2013

Message from the Director and Secretary
The International Hydrological Programme (IHP) of UNESCO is pleased to launch this inaugural issue of its Newsletter, with the kind support of the Secretariat of the Netherlands National Committee IHP-HWRP. This initiative aims to strengthen knowledge sharing and increase awareness of our activities amongst Members States and the UNESCO Water Family. We would welcome suggestions and feedback.

− Blanca Jiménez-Cisneros
Director, Division of Water Sciences, UNESCO
Secretary, International Hydrological Programme, UNESCO

Climate Change Impacts in Major Mountainous Regions of the World
The International Hydrological Programme (IHP) is implementing UNESCO’s contribution to climate change mitigation and adaptation through an intersectoral project entitled «Climate Change Impacts in Major Mountainous Regions of the World: Multidisciplinary Network for Adaptation Strategies (Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe)».
   The overall objective is to contribute to enhanced resilience to global change, particularly climate change, through improved understanding of vulnerabilities, opportunities and potentials for adaptation, and through the development of strategies and policies based on scientific evidence-based knowledge in major mountain regions of Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.
   For the implementation of this project, regional workshops are being organized to gather inputs from Africa, Asia and Latin America. Research needs have been identified, as well as most vulnerable communities and groups. Moreover, best practices highlighting community adaptation initiatives and strategies have been documented and disseminated in each region.
   In 2013 a regional workshop was held in Nepal in March, and regional workshops will take place in Costa Rica in August and Kenya in September.
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Andean Climate Variability and Change
From 3 to 6 September 2013, the first workshop on «Andean Climate Variability and Change» will be held in Peru. The Andean Climate Change Interamerican Observatory (ACCIÓN) Network, an initiative funded by the United States of America State Department, together with the UNESCO International Hydrological Programme (IHP) invite atmospheric and environmental science students from Andean countries to participate in this workshop. The course aims to foster cross-disciplinary connections and collaborations and will cover a broad spectrum of climate change aspects. The ACCIÓN climate workshop invites scientists from all fields of climate research to apply.
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International Workshop on Remote Sensing and Eco-hydrology in Arid Regions, 16–20 September 2013, Beijing, China
The workshop aims to strengthen the global capacity to manage the water resources of arid and semi-arid areas. Its primary goal is to communicate and exchange the successful experiences on the application of remote sensing for water management and the study of eco-hydrology in arid regions.
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High-Level International Conference on Water Cooperation
The Republic of Tajikistan in cooperation with UN agencies, convenes the International High-Level Conference on Water Cooperation in Dushanbe on 20–22 August 2013, according to the General Assembly Resolution A/67/204 ‘Implementation of the International Year of Water Cooperation, 2013’, adopted last December. The main purpose of the Conference is to promote dialogue and mutual understanding and to strengthen the partnership and cooperation on water issues among all stakeholders at all levels. UNESCO, as the lead agency in the coordination of the International Year of Water Cooperation, is playing a supporting role in the preparation of the Conference in a number of ways.
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UNESCO-HidroEX opens selection for three vacancies of Master’s Degree course in Netherlands
The International Centre for Education, Capacity Building and Applied Research in Water (UNESCO-HidroEX, Brazil) is accepting applications for three places in Master's courses at UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, in Delft, Netherlands.
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UNESCO at the World Water Week in Stockholm , 1–6 September 2013

The 2013 World Water Week in Stockholm is dedicated to «Water Cooperation – Building Partnerships» to reflect the United Nations’ celebration of 2013 as the International Year of Water Cooperation. As the lead agency for the International Year of Water Cooperation 2013 celebration, UNESCO is engaged in co-organizing and participating in several of the key events during the Week.

UNESCO’s Director-General, Ms Irina Bokova, will deliver one of the keynote addresses in the Opening Plenary. She will also participate in a High Level Panel on water cooperation where she will highlight key messages discerned from major IYWC events preceding the Week. (Monday, 2 September 2013)

Ms Bokova will co-launch, with the Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)/Chair of UN-Water and a representative of the Government of Sweden, the «Giant Puzzle of Water Cooperation» initiative, which aims to raise awareness of the role of water cooperation in sustainable and fair development. (Monday, 2 September 2013)

The Assistant Director-General for Natural Sciences, Ms Gretchen Kalonji, will present UNESCO’s perspectives on water in the post-2015 era in a UN-Water Stakeholder Dialogue on appropriate tools and roles based on practical experience with the aim of triggering actions by UN-Water agencies throughout the post-2015 agenda. (Sunday, 1 September 2013)

Ms Blanca Jimenez-Cisneros, Secretary of the International Hydrological Programme (IHP) of UNESCO, will actively participate in a number of the above described sessions. As a member of the jury for the prestigious Stockholm Water Prize, Ms Jimenez-Cisneros will also participate in the prize’s Award Ceremony. (Thursday, 5 September 2013)

In addition to the high level participation, UNESCO’s IHP is mobilizing its network of experts throughout many of the week’s technical sessions and initiatives on topics ranging from water security to climate change adaptation, education, transboundary waters management, capacity building and training, water governance, among others. This includes co-convening a workshop on «Cooperation Across and Within Jurisdictions and Levels for Good Water Governance – Local to Global» (Tuesday, 3 September 2013)

New knowledge, new practice for resilient water security – 1 September 2013
On Sunday 1 September 2013 a seminar «New Knowledge, New Practice for Resilient Water Security – Building a Science Policy Interface» will will showcase new approaches, emerging best practices and lessons learned from both developed and developing countries. The seminar is organized by OECD, in cooperation with AGWA, Conservation International, Engility, Environmental Law Institute, SIWI, Stratus, UNESCO-IHP, United States Agency for International Development and University of Texas at Austin. The seminar Case studies will highlight experiences addressing risks and poor water management. The seminar will actively engage participants in a roundtable discussion on lessons learned and overcoming obstacles to advancing resilient water security.
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Strengthening the basis for water cooperation across borders – 1 September 2013
Also on Sunday 1 September 2013, during the upcoming World Water Week in Stockholm, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), together with a dozen of international water partners including UNESCO’s IHP and the Netherlands National Committee IHP-HWRP, will organize a seminar on water cooperation across borders including the multi-level governance of internationally shared freshwaters. Convened during the International Year of Water Cooperation, the seminar will address key instruments, tools, institutions and ongoing initiatives aimed at strengthening governance and supporting transboundary water cooperation, taking into account national perspectives.
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acrobat icon Seminar flyer with programme [PDF, 498 KB]

Groundwater information reliability and international cooperation – 2 September 2013
When is groundwater information sufficiently reliable for international cooperation? On 2 September 2013 IGRAC will respond to this question by presenting the latest developments of its Global Groundwater Monitoring Network (GGMN) programme. This will be followed by a presentation on groundwater monitoring in data sparse regions and by another showing example from a data rich (and technologically advanced) region. This session is organized by IGRAC, together with UNESCO’s IHP and WMO.
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Climate uncertainty in water resources planning and management – 5 September 2013
On Thursday 5 September 2013 UNESCO-IHP, the French Water Partnership and ONEMA, in partnership with AGWA, will host the side event «Climate Uncertainty in Water Resources Planning and Management». The session wil focus on how to connect relevant science – climate science, hydrology, ecology – with water resources managers to develop effective management and climate change adaptation strategies. Decision makers, researchers and water managers will present their perspectives and experiences in a lively panel-audience discussion focusing on how to move beyond climate uncertainties and into a new era of science-based resilient water management.
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WWAP at the World Water Week in Stockholm
On 4 September 2013 the World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) will co-organize the «UN-Water seminar on the Water-Energy Nexus», in collaboration with UN-Water, UNU and UNIDO, as part of the preparations for the 2014 World Water Day. In co-operation with SIWI, WWAP will also be organizing the seminar 'Water and Energy: Beyond the Nexus' on 5 September 2013, that will reach beyond the 'water for energy'/'energy for water' metrics and the description of inter-linkages between these domains, focusing on the broader water-related implications of the changing global energy mix and other energy production trends. In collaboration with UNW-DPC (Bonn, Germany), WWAP will also be providing support to UNW-DPAC (Zaragoza, Spain) in organizing the UN-Water Stakeholder Dialogue on «the Post 2015 Development Agenda – The World We Want».
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Please regularly check our website for an update of the activities planned by the UNESCO Water Family at the World Water Week 2013.

Cooperation with UNIDO to explore the potential of nanotechnology to help address water challenges
Nanotechnology may offer promising solutions to address water problems in developing countries, but challenges should not be underestimated. What is the potential that nanotechnology holds to address these water problems? What nanotechnologies offer the most immediate promise in water purification and wastewater treatment? Which areas of water use are in the largest need of a technological upgrade and innovation?
These were the main questions raised by a joint UNESCO-UNIDO session on «Nanotechnology Applications in Water Purification and Wastewater Treatment», as part of the conference «Emerging Ethical Issues in Science and Technology», Bratislava, 30 to 31 May, the kick-off event of cooperation between UNESCO and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). The two organizations have recently embarked on in the area of nanotechnology for clean water in developing countries.
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IHP's contribution to the Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS)
On 1 to 3 July 2013 in Geneva, IHP provided technical cooperation to the «Operational Climate Services: dialogue on practical action» and represented UNESCO at the Intergovernmental Board on Climate Services (IBCS-1). WMO in coordination with UNESCO and other agencies convened a one day Dialogue in Geneva prior to the intergovernmental Board. The Dialogue on Water particularly discussed water and the User Interface Platform (UIP) on water. UNESCO provided substantial contribution to the Water Exemplar of the GFCS. Water remains one of the pillars of the GFCS.
   IHP in consultation with the delegation of Namibia invited a Namibian expert to serve in the panel discussion during the dialogue. UNESCO provided technical input mainly based on IHP activities:
1 – The current level of access to climate data in support of water resources management and how this access can be improved, as well as the benefits that will flow from improved access.
2 – Member state’s experience on the use of available online hydrometeorological data and tools such as provided by «UNESCO’s G-WADI Geoserver data and tools for water resource managers», which aims to improve flood forecasting and warning, as well as drought monitoring. Particular attention was paid to the use of these tools in the aftermath of recent extreme events in Namibia.

Meeting water security challenges through scientific cooperation – International Conference on Water Resources and Environment Research (ICWRER)
On 6 June 2013 an IHP session 'Meeting water security challenges through scientific cooperation' was convened as part of the International Conference on Water Resources and Environment Research (ICWRER), Koblenz, Germany, 3–7 June 2013. The session was coordinated and moderated by Mr Anil Mishra, and was opened by Dr Johannes Cullmann, Chair of the IHP intergovernmental council. Dr Cullmann highlighted the importance of prioritizing thematic areas of IHP VIII during its implementation.
The papers presented highlighted IHP's technical cooperation in Africa, Asia, LAC and Europe:
– The importance of Land Subsidence in relation to Water Security and Climate Adaptation, by Dr John Lambart
– Managing drought risk in drylands of Latin America, by Dr Koen Verbist
– Hydrologic Systems Modelling: A Compelling Tool for Decision Making for Water Security, by Professor Pradeep Mujumdar
– Optimal use of existing products worldwide to support decision making in water resource management in West-Africa, by Dr Abdou Ali
The session was dedicated to the International Year on Water Cooperation 2013.

Agreement between UNESCO-IHE and the University of Amsterdam in favor of water governance education and research
The University of Amsterdam, Department of Geography, Planning and International Development Studies and UNESCO-IHE recently signed an agreement to strengthen cooperation between the two parties. For UNESCO-IHE this represents a unique opportunity to cooperate with one of the strongest social science faculties in Europe, greatly strengthening the water governance-oriented educational and research activities at the Institute.
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IHP-HELP Centre in Dundee launches UN Watercourses Convention interactive learning website
The IHP-HELP Centre for Water Law, Policy and Science in Dundee, UK (under the auspices of UNESCO) has launched a new interactive learning website for the UN Watercourses Convention (UNWC). The UN Watercourses Convention (UNWC) website is the continuation of extensive work done by the UNWC Global Initiative aimed at promoting the benefits of the Convention to all nations with transboundary freshwater rivers, as well as supporting states to ratify the Convention and accelerate its intended entry into force.
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