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Ban Ki-moon: “Get more crop per drop” – World Water Day 2013
The following post is part of a series in anticipation of our March 20 panel “Too Hot, Too Wet, Too Dry: Building Resilient Agroecosystems” in Washington, D.C., co-hosted with the Water for Food Institute at the University of Nebraska. Please join us!
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon explained, “Water holds the key to sustainable development. We must work together to protect and carefully manage this fragile, finite resource.”
World Water Day 2013 falls during the UN International Decade for Action: Water for Life, 2005-2015, and the UN International Year of Water Cooperation, 2013. With cooperation as the theme, the World Water Day 2013 slogan is ‘Water, water everywhere, only if we share.’
Water cooperation takes many forms: Building a village water pump in Sub-Saharan Africa requires local actors to cooperate; Bringing water from a river to irrigate farmland requires regional cooperation; Managing rivers and groundwater across boundaries requires international cooperation.
Allocating precious water also requires cooperation. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization expects agriculture will face more competition from other industries as the world population increases.
A global approach to responsible management of water is necessary. Without one, food security could suffer as water needed for agriculture accounts for about 70 percent of global freshwater withdrawals. And any water shortage could be more damaging as global population and food demand continue to rise.
Water stress is a serious concern for people all over the world. Especially troubling is Sub-Saharan Africa with the largest number of water-stressed countries of any region and the fastest growing population. Lack of water for agriculture contributes to the food security challenges identified in GHI’s 2012 GAP Report®.
At the Global Harvest Initiative, we are working with a broad group of stakeholders to forge solutions to address the water and food security challenge, and to support Ban Ki-moon’s aspiration, “Let us harness the best technologies, and share the best practices to get more crop per drop.”
Below is an infographic from the United Nations on global water use and cooperation.
Source: United Nations