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HTML Document EMWIS Flash n°75, November 2009

Released 26/11/2009

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EMWIS Flash - November 2009
Euro-Mediterranean Information System on the know-how in the Water Sector
EMWIS is a program of the Union for the Mediterranean.
For further information:
Monthly Flash produced by the EMWIS Technical Unit-
It is available in English, French & Arabic.
(French & Arabic versions are available few days later)

In this issue N°75 (
1- Contribution of local and regional authorities to Med Strategy for Water, 23-24 November, Lyon
2- New step for the preparation of the water strategy for the Mediterranean
3- The Cairo Message: Coping with climate change is managing water for life
Water challenges & perspectives in the Mediterranean, 12-14 November, Paris
5- Contracting Parties to the  MAP agree on urgent adaptation and water pollution reduction measures
6- Climate Change Is Water Change: Water Experts React to Barcelona Negotiations
Arab Environment: Impact of Climate Change on the Arab Countries’ (AFED) Report 2009
8- Arab experts reviewed climate change ahead of Copenhagen
9- EU-LIFE programme: Sharing LIFE experience in water management
10- African Ministers Council on Water Summit put water at the top of the continent's agenda
11- Morocco: Emirates' ADFD fund grant for a dam construction
12- Syria: Drought response faces funding shortfall
13- Palestine: Global campaign on right to water and sanitation
14- Palestine: UNICEF to install desalinization stations in Gaza
15- Israel negotiating importing water from Turkey
16- Prince El Hassan of Jordan: Regional cooperation on water key to conflict prevention
17- France: National Observatory of water services & sanitation launched
18- Partnership agreement signed between EMWIS and the Water Embassy (L'Amassade de l'Eau)
19- Slovakia & UK: New Water Management Partnership
20- Water Footprint: from awareness to policy
21- Interactive technology empowers Europeans to manage environmental change


The Mediterranean Committee of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG-Med)organised an international conference on 23 and 24 November 2009, in Lyon (France). This conference was the contribution of local and regional authorities to the water strategy of the Union for the Mediterranean. It was attended by more than 170 participants. This meeting resulted in a set of recommendations from UCLG-Med on the Strategy for Water in the Mediterranean and the identification of 7 flagship projects for the Union for the Mediterranean in the water sector, located in Algeria, Lebanon, Morrocco, Palestine, Spain and Syria. Further information on EMWIS website.

IN BRIEF (Full news)

2- The members of the Water Expert Group –WEG- in charge of the preparation of the Strategy for Water in the Mediterranean –SWM- met for the second time in Cairo on 4 November to review the first proposals of the Technical Drafting Group defined at their 1st meeting in Athens, September 2009. They adopted a challenging timetable in order to have the SWM ready for the UfM Ministerial Conference on water planned on 12-14 April 2010 in Barcelona. A first skeleton for the SWM text was defined, with country leaders in charge of collecting contributions and preparing a synthesis on each of the 4 themes indicated in the Jordan Ministerial Declaration. This meeting was also the opportunity for the WEG to take note of various contributions from Mediterranean stakeholders. The Civil Society will be able to react on the draft text of the SWM that will be available on at the end of February 2010. The possibility to propose projects was also recalled, application modalities are available online. The next meetings of the TDG and the WEG will be in February 2010. Further information on EMWIS website.

3- A strong and fair agreement in Copenhagen at the fifteenth Conference of Parties (COP'15) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) on measures to mitigate and adapt to climate change is crucial for water resources, water services, peace and for life. The Joint Egyptian-Dutch Water Conference “Towards the new Long Term Strategy for Water in the Mediterranean (Cairo,  2 and 3 November, 2009) addressed a declaration to the negotiators for the COP'15. The messages express the understanding and the commitment of the participants of the Joint Egyptian Dutch Water Conference on the actions to be taken at all levels and functions of governance in the region. Adapting to increasing climate variability and change through better water management and water services requires significant additional efforts within water management and the areas of spatial planning and energy management. The participants expressed their commitment to strengthen institutional cooperation at all levels among the climate and water, and wider development communities, and commit themselves to develop appropriate mechanism and institutional arrangements in order to work more collectively to address the immense development challenges ahead. They urged the COP'15 negotiators, as well as the national and regional water and climate communities, to look beyond the COP'15 and work through dialogue on strengthening global and local mechanisms and practices to enhance collective and local action on water and adaptation. Further information on EMWIS website.

4- The seminar "Water challenges & perspectives in the Mediterranean", organized by the Institute for the Economic Evolution of the Mediterranean World (IPEMed), the International Office for Water (OIEAU) and the Blue Plan, brought together some forty participants from both shores of the Mediterranean in the circles of government, business and expertise. Participants discussed various issues and agreed to continue their work along four axes: - the relevance of a Mediterranean water agency and regional common regulation in the future Mediterranean water policy; the self-evaluation of local water services based on indicators to be tested by voluntary cities; - the participation, democratization and dissemination of information on water services; and finally, - the water for irrigation. Further information on EMWIS website.

5- By the end of this century, the whole Mediterranean region will be vulnerable to water stress and suffer significantly from climate change impacts. Some research indicates the Mediterranean as one of the climate change “hotspots” in the century to come. These sobering data were presented at the opening of the Ministerial Session of the Conference of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention (UNEP/MAP), held in Marrakech, Morocco on 3-5 November. The main impacts of climate change on seas can be witnessed in rising temperatures; acidification (changes in the chemical balance of the waters due to absorption of CO2); changing currents; impacts on marine fauna and flora; and rising sea-levels. In the Mediterranean in particular, effects are to be sought in terms of increasingly strained water context, biodiversity and ecosystems impacts and the economic activities which depend thereon, agriculture, fisheries and tourism in particular. Sea level rise impacts on ports and other coastal infrastructures, as well as coastal and beach erosion, are also a serious concern. Formidable threats are passed to the Nile Delta, to cities like Venice and to some islands, even in case of minimal changes in sea levels. The contracting parties also discussed commitment proposals to implement waste water treatment plants in all significant urban areas  located on Mediterranean watersheds according to two deadlines: 2015 & 2019. “The measures adopted in response to climate change have to be such as to promote sustainable development and achieve the Millennium Development Goals, and the objectives of the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development”, said President of the Contracting Parties, H.E Mr Abdelkabir Zahoud, State Secretary of the Moroccan Ministry for Energy, Mining, Water and Environment. Further information on EMWIS website.

6- Water advocates and experts convened in Barcelona to lobby climate negotiators to recognize intersections of water and climate, and for the inclusion of key water language in the working documents that will form the backbone for high-level meetings in Copenhagen in December. So far, they feel, their efforts have fallen on deaf ears. The Global Public Policy Network, a group that includes the United Nations' own water group and other water-related organizations, hosted a "water day" to coincide with the final build-up conference before the United Nations Copenhagen Climate Conference of next December. Water experts say they are deeply dismayed that all references to water have been stricken from the Non Paper 31-the draft text for Copenhagen. The organizations hope they can convince negotiators to re-instate mention of climate change impacts on water. The amount of people concerned about freshwater shortages has increased five percentage points since 2003, when the opinion polling was first done. Observers of the talks in Barcelona said climate pact negotiators told them the text of the agreement needed to be shortened before Copenhagen. Water was not considered a significant enough issue to keep in. Further information on EMWIS website. See also: "Water evaporates from the climate change negotiating text".

7- ‘Impact of Climate Change on the Arab Countries’ is the second of a series of annual reports produced by the Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED). The first, released in 2008 under the title ‘Arab Environment: Future Challenges’, covered the most pressing environmental issues facing the region. The 2009 AFED report (available in English & Arabic) analyzes the Arab response to the urgent need for adaptation measures, and uses the latest research findings to describe the vulnerabilities of natural and human systems in the Arab world to climate change and the impacts on different sectors. In an attempt to help shape adequate policies, the report discusses options for a post-Kyoto regime and outlines the state of international negotiations in this regard. Further information on EMWIS website.

8- A team of Arab experts has been formed to document the impact of climate change on the Arab region in order to unify Arab states’ stance on the phenomenon. The group has been tasked with compiling a report on the effects of climate change on the Arab region, which is highly vulnerable to the phenomenon due to its arid climates, prior to the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December. The report, which also details international contributions to climate change, is to be presented during the Arab Environment Ministers Council meeting to be held in December in Cairo.  Arab states face several threats due to increased drought and desertification, scarcity of water resources, increased salinity of groundwater, and the spread of pest epidemics and diseases caused by the phenomenon, according to previous declarations by the Arab Environment Ministers Council. So far, climate change has caused a 30 per cent reduction in the country's surface water resources, as well as a decrease in the volume of rainfall and agricultural production, both of which the country and the Arab world heavily rely on. If climate change continues at its current pace, Jordan, for example, is expected to witness increased temperatures by 1-2 degrees Celsius by 2030-2050, diminished aquifers and oases, reduced green cover and the transformation of semi-arid lands, some 80 per cent of the country's total area, into arid deserts, according to environment experts. Further information on EMWIS website.

9- More than 150 delegates attended the European Commission’s LIFE Environment water conference, "Water for life – LIFE for Water" , which took place in Brussels on the 15 October 2009, providing a successful platform for transferring experience in EU water management. The conference specifically disseminated results of LIFE projects and illustrated how the EU LIFE programme supports the implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Good practices and experiences from 12 different LIFE water-related projects targeting water scarcity, river engineering, eutrophication and the recently adopted Marine Strategy were presented and discussed. Issues addressed by these projects included: integrated water management at the river basin level; the application of almond trees in protecting soil; the role of water engineering in river restoration; floodplain restoration; integrated management of coastal areas; the assessment of pollution risks from wastewater discharges in coastal areas; and reducing pollution in surface and groundwater through good agricultural practices. Further information on EMWIS website.

10- A one-week summit of the African Ministers Council on Water was held in Johannesburg in November. The resulting Ministerial declaration is calling for strengthening and scaling up of existing initiatives and refinement of strategies. The ministers attending acknowledged the many commitments and initiatives aimed at achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the 2025 African Water Vision target for water and sanitation. The meeting took place concurrently with the Second Africa Water conference, in Midrand, which aimed to consolidate the continent's position ahead of the climate change meeting in Copenhagen in early December. The conference aimed to find solutions to transboundary water management and voiced concerns about climate change impacts on the continent. Several issues emerged from the conference, the most dominant was a consensus that it would be possible for African countries to develop and grow even in times of crisis if they could achieve the necessary political will to refocus their development trajectories. The conference pointed to a number of issues that affect the continent's development including climate and biodiversity, a weak private sector, population pressure, lack of infrastructure, underdeveloped financial systems, weak human capacity and poor governance. Further information on EMWIS website.

11- The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) has granted Morocco a loan of MAD 62 million (about USD 17.5 million) to help in the construction of the ‘Timkit Dam' in the eastern province of Errachidia. Needing an overall investment of MAD 150 million, the dam will have a capacity of 14 million cubic meters and is expected to increase water reserves in the region and protect it from floods. The ADFD has contributed to the financing of 27 projects. It contributed with USD 300 million to Morocco's large-scale Tangier Med port.  Further information on EMWIS website.

12- With a few weeks left before the end of this year's planting season, UN officials have raised concerns over the lack of funds to help drought-hit farmers and herders in north-eastern Syria. The northeast and the Badia region of Syria were hit by the worst drought in 40 years as rain failed for three consecutive years. The drought caused devastating losses for about 1.3 million people, of whom more than 800,000 were severely affected, according to the UN and the Syrian government. The Syria Drought Response Plan 2009, which was launched by the UN in August, seeks about US$52.9 million, with food assistance and provision of agriculture inputs key. About 90 percent of agriculture in the affected areas depends on rainfall.  The drought also forced 250,000-300,000 families (at least 1.25-1.5 million people) to leave their villages and they are now concentrated in the suburbs of Damascus and other cities like Aleppo and Daa'ra, according to Mohamad Alloush, director of the environment department at the State Planning Commission (SPC). Last year Syria agreed with Turkey to draw 100 cubic meters per second of water from the trans-border Tigris River to irrigate 150,000ha of land in Hasakeh, the worst drought-hit governorate. Further information on EMWIS website

13- The EWASH Advocacy Task Force (representing some 30 organisations working in water, sanitation and hygiene in the occupied Palestinian territory) is launching a global campaign on the right to water and sanitation in Palestine. The campaign will run from 6-13 December, centred around Human Rights Day (10 December). A number of activities are planned for this week in Palestine and it is hoped that organisations and activists around the world will become involved. Further information on EMWIS website.

14- The UN children's agency UNICEF says it plans to begin installing two desalinization stations in Rafah and Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip. Saji Mughanni, of the UNICEF information office, said in a statement, that the equipment for the two installations was shipped to Gaza through the Kerem Shalom crossing. The equipment will be installed on two wells with a total capacity of 50 cubic meters of drinkable fresh water per hour. He added that about 40,000 people in Gaza will receive water from these stations which are expected to start functioning in two months. According to Mughanni, 60% of Gaza Strip's population has suffered a shortage drinkable water for a long period of time. He said about 10,000 Gaza residents are not connected to any water network at all. UNICEF says it plans to install more wells, rehabilitate water and sewage networks, and install more desalinization plants. Further information on EMWIS website.

15- Israel has begun examining the possibility of importing water from Turkey, despite recent tensions between Jerusalem and Ankara, according to a memo obtained by Ynet (an Israelian daily news source). A Foreign Ministry official confirmed the report, saying that "the Water Authority has issued an appeal for purchasing water, and Turkish bodies have responded positively and talks are being held between relevant elements in both countries." The talks have begun despite the recent crisis. The issue of importing water from Turkey has been on the agenda for several years now. Turkey has large water serves flowing into the Mediterranean Sea, while Israel suffers from a serious water shortage. In 2002, former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's government signed an agreement to import water from Turkey, but the matter was later taken off the table, mainly due to economic considerations. A Water Authority official said in response, "As part of emergency measures, the Water Authority is also examining the issue of importing water, and additional elements may become involved." Further information on EMWIS website.

16- HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal of Jordan, in his keynote speech at the opening session of the 'Third Convening of the Parliamentarians Network for Conflict Prevention and Human Security' (November 4, 2009), reiterated "that the region must establish a supranational commission for water and energy for the human environment in West Asia and North Africa". Prince El Hassan outlined what is required to develop a road map for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and to reach a new world solidarity concept, so that global commons can meet regional commons. During the conference, which focused on the theme of improving regional cooperation on water, HRH said that the new global challenge faced by the region is to actively participate in the essence of the next round of discussions regarding the MDGs. During the same event, Vice President of the EastWest Institute, Ambassador Günter Overfeld, said that there is a need for preventive policy in the context of water security, and a process of networking to exchange the views of experts and specialists in this area. He added that there is considerable knowledge of water scarcity in the world, but what we need is to consider ways that contribute to addressing this scarcity. Member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, stressed the importance attached by the Parliamentarians Network to the issue of water security, conflict prevention and human security, and called for the development of a cooperative program of water usage to help communities across Palestine and the region.  Further information on EMWIS website.

17- Chantal JOUANNO, French State Secretary for Ecology, launched officially the National Observatory of water and sanitation services at the 18th Congress of Mayors last November. For the first time a national database, fed by local authorities, will bring together all performance indicators available on the public water services and sanitation. With the observatory, politicians will thus have a tool to manage their services, track their trends from one year to another, compare their performance with similar services. The observatory is also a response to the citizens' concerns on getting clear information on water prices and quality of service. It was presented at the roundtable "price and quality, is your water and sanitation service effective?" Organized by the National Office for Water and Aquatic Environments (ONEMA) and the Ministry of Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Development and Sea. Further information on EMWIS website.

18- During the press conference held last November 23, 2009, in Lyon (France) in the sideline of the conference "Contribution of local and regional authorities to the Water Strategy of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM)", a partnership agreement was signed between EMWIS and the ADE (Water Embassy). This partnership aims at promoting a modelling and simulation tool allowing strategic and prospective analysis on water demand versus water availability at different geographic scales. The first prototype should be presented at the Ministerial conference on water of the UfM in Barcelona in April 2010. During this press conference, other initiatives of the the Water Embassy were presented, including the Mediterranean Union for Youth Ambassadors of Water (UMJAE) as well as the Deir el Ahmar, Lebanon (district of Baalbeck) project. It brought together representatives from the French Ministry for Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Development and the sea, Dr. Fadi Comair, Director General of Water Resources and Energy of Lebanon; Mr Khalil Sekar, Mayor of Deir El Ahmar in Lebanon, Mrs. Jeannette Prétot, president of ADE;  Mr. Walter MAZZITTI, president of Euro-Mediterranean information system on the know-how in the water sector (EMWIS), and many elected officials and financial partners around the Mediterranean. Further information on EMWIS website.

19- Intellitect Water (UK) is delighted to announce a new distribution partnership with ECO Monitoring in Slovakia for its Intellisonde in-pipe water-quality monitors. Intellisondes represent a revolution in clean water management, providing information about water quality data within the distribution network. Developed to continuously monitor in-pipe drinking water, the Intellisonde is a small water quality monitor that can be inserted into pressurised pipes to monitor up to 12 parameters (including chlorination levels).  Further information on EMWIS website.

20- An increasing number of people recognises that the water footprint of humanity is unsustainable. Consumptive water use exceeds available water resources in many places, which results in dropping groundwater and lake levels and emptied rivers in various places. Water pollution is widespread, but unnecessary. Through our consumption of daily goods, we all relate to these problems. Many individuals, businesses and governments have started to ask themselves: what is our contribution? Also national governments realise that for developing well-informed national water policy, they have to look into the water footprint. Spain is running ahead by making it obligatory that river basin plans are based on a proper analysis of the water footprints of goods produced in the basin and by considering to which extent water-intensive goods for export are made in water-scarce basins.  Further information on EMWIS website.

21- As part of their partnership combining cutting-edge technology and environmental data, Microsoft Corp and the European Environment Agency (EEA) have expanded their Eye On Earth portal. A new application, AirWatch provides information on air quality to more than 500 million people across Europe. For the first time, EEA brings together both measured and modelled data alongside citizens' observations on air quality. Further information on EMWIS website.


22- Lebanon: The formation of a government of national unity in Lebanon was announced last November 9, 2009 by the First Minister Saad Hariri. In this government of 30 members, the Ministry of Water and Energy returns to Gebran Bassil, former Minister of Telecommunications and member of the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM). Further information on EMWIS website.

23- The Academy appointed its first director Prof Asma El Kasmi who took up the position on November 1st and aims to bring a wealth of international water education experience to the Academy. The Arab Water Academy, which was launched in July 2008, offered a Water Diplomacy programme, under the theme Sharing Water, Sharing Benefits, from October 11-13, 2009. The Academy, which was established in cooperation with the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD) and the International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA) is supported by the Arab Council of Water and the Islamic Development Bank and the World Bank. It aims to be a center of excellence for advanced scientific and technical cooperation at the regional level and a permanent venue for the implementation of the latest training programmes in water resources planning and management. Further information on EMWIS website.

24- The Great Man-Made River International Water Prize for Arid and Semi-Arid Zones was awarded to Dr Bellachheb Chahbani whose research findings over the last 25 years at the Institute of Arid Regions in Médenine, Tunisia, have led to the development of an approach to improve water use. The Prize is made possible by a generous donation from the government of the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. In essence, what Dr Chahbani has accomplished has increased the reliability of irrigation water that can be made available to crops, while at the same time reducing the water needed to effectively irrigate such crops. His new techniques have been implemented and are currently in use in both central and southern Tunisia and Algeria. As a result, not only have operating costs been reduced by around a third, but also many crops have been saved that would otherwise have perished from lack of water under drought conditions. Further information on EMWIS website.

25- The EC LIFE Unit Reorganised: Following an internal reorganisation, as from 1 October 2009 there are now two LIFE units responsible for the LIFE programme in DG Environment. The first is called LIFE Nature (DG ENV E3), with Mr. Angelo Salsi as Head of Unit and Mr. Joaquim Capitão as Deputy. This unit is responsible for managing LIFE Nature and LIFE+ Nature & Biodiversity projects, as well as those LIFE+ Information & Communication projects that deal with nature conservation, biodiversity and Natura 2000. The second is called LIFE Environment and Eco-Innovation (DG ENV E4), with Mr. Hervé Martin as Head of Unit (his Deputy will shortly be appointed). This unit is responsible for managing LIFE Environment and LIFE+ Environment Policy & Governance projects, as well as those LIFE+ Information & Communication projects not dealing with nature conservation. The unit will also deal with the Environmental Technologies Action Plan (ETAP), the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) and the Environmental NGO funding programme. Further information on EMWIS website.

26- Shenggen Fan has been selected to succeed Joachim von Braun as director general of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). Earlier this year, Joachim von Braun decided to resume his position as director of the Center for Development Research and professor of Economics and Technological Change at the University of Bonn in mid-December. Further information on EMWIS website.

27- IUCN/WBCSD Calendar 2010: "Water - Opportunities and Risks" - Call for Sponsorship: To highlight the ever increasing challenges in the water sector in all areas of the world affecting every aspect of our society, the International Union of Conservation of Nature (IUCN or “World Conservation Union”) as well as the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) will be introducing a prestigious A3 sized 2010 calendar which will be presented to government environment and planning departments, inter-governmental agencies, non government organisations and key individuals engaged in the water sector. A minimum of ten thousand (10,000) printed copies will be distributed, of highest quality, full colour using twelve photographic images from some of the world’s top photographers portraying positive initiatives as well as highlighting some of the challenges in the water sector. Sponsors will benefit among other from exceptionally high-level exposure to an exclusive and responsive audience of water sector stakeholders. Further information on EMWIS website.

28- On 21 October 2002, His Royal Highness Prince Sultan Bin Abdulaziz - Crown Prince in Saudi Arabia, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General - announced in Riyadh that nominations were being accepted for a new global Prize to be awarded biannually: the "Prince Sultan Bin Abdulaziz International Prize for Water".  The Prize is established to acknowledge exceptional and innovative scientific work which contributes to the sustainable availability of potable water and the alleviation of water scarcity, particularly in arid regions. The Prize is accepting nominations for its 4th Award (2008-2010). The deadline for submitting applications and all nominated works is 31 January 2010.  All nominations for the 4th Award of the Prize are made directly online. Further information on EMWIS website.

29- Post-doc position – 12 months: "Which scenarios for water management: an analysis from literature review and interviews". This post-doc is part of MAELIA project which gathers 4 research entities of Toulouse (France): LMTG , IRIT , MSHS-T (and its components) and AGIR. The MAELIA project (Multi-Agent for Environmental Norms Impact Assessment) consists in modelling socio-environnement al impacts of norms elaborated for managing and governing natural resources and environment. The work will start during the first trimester of 2010. Deadline for submission of applications: ASAP. Further information on EMWIS website.


30- On the opening day of the 16th Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, UNEP/MAP and its regional activities centres (RACs) presented the first State of the Environment and Development (SOED) report covering the Mediterranean region. The State of the Environment and Development in the Mediterranean 2009 is a pilot exercise, based on the currently available sources of information and tackling key environmental issues for the Mediterranean region, such as climate change impacts in the Mediterranean region, water scarcity, threats to biodiversity and pollution. The report covers the 21 countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. The preparation of the SOED 2009 was lead by the Plan Bleu, under the coordination of MAP Secretariat, and involved the joint effort of all MAP regional activities centres. Further information on EMWIS website.


31- A series of ‘best practice’ presentations from the thematic workshops of the recent “Water for life – LIFE for water” Conference held on the 14-15 October 2009 are now online.  Further information on EMWIS website.


32- "The Political Economy of Water Demand Management in Yemen and Jordan: A Synthesis of Findings": This report prepared by Mark Zeitoun  (consultant affiliated to the School of International Development, University of East Anglia) synthesises and builds on two  studies commissioned in Jordan and Yemen by the Water Demand Management Initiative in MENA-WaDImena  project ( funded by IDRC-Canada, CIDA-Canada and IFAD). Further information on EMWIS website.


33- "Syria Drought Response Plan": Syria has been affected by drought since 2006. While the 2007-2008 drought was very severe and had a wider geographical reach, the current drought has again affected a population that was already suffering from the impacts of previous drought spells. According to the Government of Syria and UN assessment missions, some 1.3 million inhabitants of eastern Syria have been affected by this disaster, out of which 803,000 have lost almost all of their livelihoods and face extreme hardship. The Syria Drought Response Plan (SDRP) has been developed with the aim of supplementing and enhancing the assistance already put in place by the Syrian Government. All projects have been developed and will be implemented in close coordination with the concerned authorities and targeted communities.  Further information on EMWIS website.


34- The latest title in the award-winning Earthscan Atlas Series - The Atlas of Water, 2nd Edition - is now available. The Atlas of Water provides instant access to crucial new information on global water supplies, and the latest thinking on the emerging issues around what may soon become the most valuable commodity on earth. The powerful maps and graphics - and concise text that sticks to the facts - convey the complicated story of global water issues with an immediacy and comprehensibility that narrative accounts are simply unable to match (Water shortage map, Water footprint map, Floods map, etc.). Further information on EMWIS website.


35- New book from Earthscan: "The Adaptive Water Resource Management Handbook". This book includes illustrative case studies from seven river basins from across Europe, West Asia and Africa: the Elbe, Rhine, Guadiana, Tisza, Orange, Nile and Amudarya. These exemplify the key challenges of adaptive water management, especially when rivers cross national boundaries, creating additional problems of governance. Further information on EMWIS website.


36- The United Nations General Assembly held on Friday, 6 November a Special Event on Water. The presentations and webcast of the UN Press Conferenceare available online.  Further information on EMWIS website.


37- UNESCO releases booklet on the human right to water at an experts’ meeting on 7-8 July 2009 in Paris, France. The main purpose of the meeting was to bring together international experts to discuss and develop recommendations on the right to water and access to sanitation, which are presented in the following booklet. Further information on EMWIS website.


38- New Paper from IFPRI: Implications for food and agricultural policy of "green" and "blue" water accounting: Globally, most food is produced using soil moisture that comes from precipitation (i.e., "green" water). Moreover, most of the water that reaches plants in irrigated systems also stems from precipitation. Despite this, irrigation (or "blue") water has typically been the focus for policy analysis. This paper analyzes alternative water futures using a combined green and blue water accounting framework embedded within the water simulation components of IFPRI's International Model for Policy Analysis of Agricultural Commodities and Trade (IMPACT). The results reveal that accounting explicitly for green water resources broadens the scope of options for decision-makers who are seeking to improve agricultural production in the face of rising food and energy prices, a degrading water and land resource base, and increasing demands. This analysis highlight the importance of green/blue water accounting and presents a wider range of agricultural science and technology policy options for increasing global crop productivity across a span of potential futures. Further information on EMWIS website.


39- The summary of the conference "Climate Change and Water" held in 22 and October 23, 2009, on the theme of "Implementation of the Framework Directive on Water in a context of climate change adaptation" is available online (in French). Further information on EMWIS website.


40- The Institute for the Economic Evolution of the Mediterranean World (IPEMed) book: "Climate change: a necessary anticipation". This report presents the results of the latest scientific developments on climate expected in this geographic area and possible consequences in several economic sectors: water resources, agriculture, tourism, power generation and energy, transport, urban planning. It calls on awareness of the need to anticipate and to cooperate to limit the impacts of climate change and ensure sustainable development throughout the region. This paper is available on request. Further information on EMWIS website.


41- "Managing the Water Buffer for Development and Climate Change Adaptation: Groundwater Recharge, Retention, Reuse and Rainwater Storage": This book explores how to maximize the use of groundwater and rainwater for development and climate change adaptation in an approach called 3R. The vision of 3R is to give people the means and confidence to protect their livelihoods in response to climatic changes, and to improve local water management to ensure reliable access to water, economic development and the integrity of their environment. 3R stands for Recharge, Retention and Reuse. Further information on EMWIS website.


42- World Development Report 2010: Development and Climate Change provides a comprehensive overview of the threat posed by climate change and how we should respond to it. It is essential reading and an invaluable reference for policymakers, scholars, development practitioners, and anyone interested in helping to shape the future of our planet. Further information on EMWIS website.


43- Guidance on Water and Adaptation to Climate Change released and adopted by Water Convention Parties‏: It was released and adopted by the fifth session of the Meeting of the Parties to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe's Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention) which took place on 10-12 November in Geneva. The Guidance is a unique tool which explains step-by-step how to develop and implement an adaptation strategy, with a special focus on the transboundary context. Based on the concept of integrated water resources management, the Guidance provides advice to decision makers and water managers on how to assess impacts of climate change on water quantity and quality, how to perform risk assessment, including health risks, how to gauge vulnerability, and how to design and implement appropriate adaptation strategies.  Further information on EMWIS website.


44- Risk assessment of Cryptosporidium in drinking water: As a waterborne pathogen of significant concern, Cryptosporidium is considered a key reference pathogen in the Guidelines for drinking-water quality (GDWQ). This text complements and supports the GDWQ by providing further data on Cryptosporidium in order to assist country authorities in setting health-based targets and water suppliers in determining required performance of water treatment processes as part of a system-specific Water Safety Plan. Further information on EMWIS website.


45- Briefing Note on climate change adaptation and water: GWP has been laying the groundwork for Goal 2 of its 2009-2013 global strategy. It's about developing strategic messages to inform and influence key audiences about the links between water and climate change (and other development challenges). The most recent production is a one-page Briefing Note which summarizes GWP's talking points on the topic of climate change adaptation and water. Further information on EMWIS website.

46- The GWP Strategy 2009-2013 is now available in French, Spanish and Russian. Printed copies of the Strategy in Spanish and French can be ordered via e-mail. Further information on EMWIS website.

47- Quantitative Benchmarks for Municipal Waste Prevention: "A guide for Local & Regional Authorities in support of the new Waste Framework Directive":  Further information on EMWIS website.


48- INPIM E-Newsletter 93 (October 2009 Issue) is available now online, focusing on the main news and events concerning water sector and climate change. Further information on EMWIS website.


49- Climate change impacts (natural and anthropogenic factors) and response options in mountainous areas: This is a Mountain pilot call under the CIRCLE ERA-NET. The theme for project proposals is climate change impacts (natural and anthropogenic factors) and response options in mountainous areas including effects on /inter alia/, water resources, infrastructure, slope stability, agriculture, tourism, public health and biodiversity. The call will be open between September 22, 2009 and January 29, 2010, 5 pm CET. The projects of the consortium should be ready to begin on August 1, 2010. Further information on EMWIS website.

50- FP7-ENV-2010 Environment (including climate change) Call: The call (Deadline: 05 January 2010) allocates EUR170 000 000 million for research topics (49 topics) in all the four activities of the Theme: 
Activity 6.1: Climate change, pollution and risks
Activity 6.2: Sustainable management of resources
Activity 6.3: Environmental technologies
Activity 6.4: Earth observation and assessment tools for sustainable development

Further information on EMWIS website.

51- European Commission to provide over €200 million for nearly 200 new LIFE+ projects: The European Commission has approved funding for 196 new projects under the second call for the LIFE+ programme (2007-2013). The projects are from across the EU and cover actions in the fields of nature conservation, environmental policy, and information and communication. Overall, they represent a total investment of €431 million, of which the EU will provide €207.5 million. Further information on EMWIS website.

52- "Water competitions for all" call for projects: For the second consecutive year, the SUEZ ENVIRONMENT Foundation - WATER FOR ALL, based at the Institute of France, launched the competition "Water for All". It aims to develop projects promoting the improvement, development and professionalization of urban services of water and sanitation in developing countries. Two prizes will be awarded in May 2010 in Paris: - Grand Prize, awarded a sum of 100 000 EUR, - Special Prize, awarded a sum of 30 000 EUR. The call for applications is open till December 15, 2010. Further information on EMWIS website.

53- A further 74 projects of the programme INTERREG IVC have been approved by the Monitoring Committe on 5 November 2009 (28 projects under the environment and risk prevention theme). A full list of projects, including their sub-theme and Lead partner details are available online. Further information on EMWIS website.


54- Call for Expression of Interest for participation in development of INSPIRE Data Specifications: The Call is addressed to the INSPIRE Spatial Data Interest Communities (SDICs) and Legally Mandated Organisations (LMOs). The Commission is seeking voluntary contributions of SDICs and LMOs, asking them to propose experts (domain experts, Facilitators, Editors) for the Thematic Working Groups (TWGs) and reference materials to be taken into consideration for the data specifications. Further information on EMWIS website.

55- Last Call for abstract to the Fifth International Conference on the Geology of the Tethys Realm (2-7 January 2010, South Valley University, Quena - Luxor, Egypt): Abstracts should be submitted before 1st of December 2009. Further information on EMWIS website.

56- WEX 2010 call for abstracts: The Water and Energy Exchange "Improving Efficiency in Water Systems", Limassol, Cyprus; 3-4/02/2010), is organized by Bentley. The aim of this must-attend event is to share the outcomes of the latest research and development initiatives applied to improving efficiency in water distribution systems, including managing and reducing water loss and energy usage. Abstract deadlines: December 11, 2009. Further information on EMWIS website.

57- Call for abstracts for the 5th International Conference on the Water Resources in the Mediterranean Basin, WATMED 5: The main objective of WATMED5 conference, which will be held in Lille (France) the days 26-28 of May 2010; is to create a forum for exchange and debate on the challenges encountered in the management and protection of water resources in the Mediterranean Basin. High Consideration will be given to the water impact on the sustainable and the conference aims to promote a collective dynamic between local and regional players in Mediterranean countries. The deadline for abstract submission is 15 January 2010. Further information on EMWIS website.

58- ICLEI Resilient Cities 2010 Congress - Call for contributions: ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability and the City of Bonn invite you to join the Resilient Cities 2010 Congress, to be held on 28-30 May 2010 in Bonn, Germany and present your experiences. The deadline for contributions is 31 December 2009. Further information on EMWIS website.

59- Call for abstracts: "ISMAR7 - International Symposium on Managed Aquifer Recharge".  In 2010, the ISMAR event will be coordinated and hosted jointly by the Environment Agency of Abu Dhabi and Schlumberger Water Services. Deadline for abstracts submissions is 10 January 2010. Further information on EMWIS website.

60- ' ISARM 2010' - International Conference on Challenges and new directions in Transboundary Aquifers Management : The Scientific Advisory Committee will select from the extended abstracts a number of authors who will be requested to prepare full-length papers. Proceedings will be published by UNESCO-IHP. The participants are kindly requested to submit their abstracts by 30 March 2010. The Conference will be held at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris (France) from 6-8 December 2010. Further information on EMWIS website.

61- The forthcoming 3rd International Symposium on 'Recent Advances in Quantitative Remote Sensing', will be held in Valencia (Spain), from 27 September to 1 October 2010. A call for papers is launched till the 15th February 2010. Further information on EMWIS website


62- Partners can now register for the next Water Footprint Training Course. Period: 16-18 February 2010. Place: UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft, the Netherlands. Further information on EMWIS website.

63- [2009/12/10 - 2009/12/10] OIEAU Days: "Production of alternative energies in the water & sanitation sector", Paris, France.
Further information on EMWIS website.

EVENTS (Full Agenda)

[2009/12/28 - 2009/12/30] Water Security Forum, Amman, Jordan

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/19 - 2009/12/22] 2ème Colloque Maghrébin sur le Traitement et le Dessalement des Eaux (CMTDE 2009), Hammamet, Tunisia
Further information on EMWIS website.

[2009/12/16 - 2009/12/20] The Fourth Session Of The International Congress Geo Tunisia 2009: "Survey of the hydraulic resources and of desertification by using the geographic information systems, remote detection and numeric designing", Tunis, Tunisia.

Further information on EMWIS website.

[2009/12/14 - 2009/12/14] Managing your water – after COP 15: Climate change - adapting to the future, Copenhagen, Denmark

Further information on EMWIS website

[2009/12/10 - 2009/12/11] Towards new methods to manage nitrate pollution within the Water Framework Directive, Paris, France.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/10 - 2009/12/10] OIEAU Days: "Production of alternative energies in the water & sanitation sector", Paris, France.
Further information on EMWIS website.

[2009/12/10 - 2009/12/10] Rethinking Water Emerging Challenges for Regulation and Legislation, London, UK.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/09 - 2009/12/10] Quel(s) rôle(s) pour les instruments économiques dans la gestion des ressources en eau en Europe? Enjeux politiques et questions de recherche, Paris, France.

Further information on EMWIS website.

[2009/12/08 - 2009/12/09] International Workshop on Water and Health: A European Perspective, Koblenz, Germany

Further information on EMWIS website

[2009/12/07 - 2009/12/18] Conference of the Parties (COP), Fifteen session and Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP/MOP), Fifth session, Copenhagen, Denmark

Further information on EMWIS website

[2009/12/07 - 2009/12/09] The Third African Leadership Conference on Space Science and Technology for Sustainable Development ALC-2009,  Algiers, Algeria

Further information on EMWIS website

[2009/12/04 - 2009/12/04] Water policy: challenges and perspectives for the future? Brussels, Belgium.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/03 - 2009/12/04] Conférence de consensus sur l'avenir du réseau d'eau non potable de Paris, Paris, France.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/03 - 2009/12/03] 3e Conférence régionale Assainissement Non Collectif "Le nouveau cadre d'actions", Paris, France.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/03 - 2009/12/03] Colloque Cercle français de l'eau : Nouveaux modes de consommation - nouveaux modèles de financement ? Paris, France.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/01 - 2009/12/04] Pollutec Horizons 2009, Paris, France

Further information on EMWIS website.

[2009/12/01 - 2009/12/02] Regional Meeting: Adaptation to Climate Change in the Maghreb: Review and Outlook, Casablanca, Morocco

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/12/01 - 2009/12/01] Mission découverte auprès de l’Union européenne: Les financements européens dans le secteur de l’environnement, l’eau et l’énergie, Brussels, Belgium.

Further information on EMWIS website.

[2009/11/30 - 2009/12/01] Colloque "Les grands fleuves vont à la mer : de la production de connaissance à la gestion durable d'environnement d'exception", Lyon, France.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/11/26 - 2009/11/28] Meeting of the Euromed Cities Network, Jdeidé, Lebanon.

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/11/26 - 2009/11/27] Water'09: Water Technologies Congress, Madrid, Spain

Further information on EMWIS website.


[2009/11/26 - 2009/11/26] The 3rd Conference on adaptation to climate change in developing countries, The Hague, The Netherlands

Further information on EMWIS website

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