2nd Beirut Water Week
The Lebanese Ministry of Energy and Water - General Directorate of Hydraulic and Electrical Resources with the assistance of regional partners has initiated in Lebanon in November 2005 the "Beirut Water Week", a Mediterranean multi-event which gathered around 200 delegates including Ministers, Water Directors and Experts, Parliamentarians members of COMPSUD, and representatives of national and international organizations.
The 1st "Beirut Water Week" served as a platform of dialogue that identified challenges, needs and priorities for action related to key issues of Integrated Water Resources Management at regional and national levels, including in the context of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership,
At the recent Euro-Mediterranean Ministerial Conference on Water (December 2008, Dead Sea), His Excellency Minister Alain Tabourian has seized the opportunity to extend an invitation to Lebanon in the aim to discuss issues emerging from the Ministerial Declaration, including contributions in developing the new Strategy for Water in the Mediterranean as well as in assisting to identifying criteria for future technical projects in such a context.
The 2nd "Beirut Water Week", which will be held between 4 and 8 February 2009 and to which we welcome you, aims to serve these objectives. It is at the initiative of the Lebanese Ministry of Energy and Water and the Global Water Partnership - Mediterranean (GWP-Med), with the support of the Mediterranean Component of the EU Water Initiative (MED EUWI), the French Government, the MEDA Water Programme and other donors. Despite the recent unrest and tragic conflict in the neighborhood, the organization of the 2nd "Beirut Water Week" indicates the firm commitment of the Mediterranean water community to work in a peaceful and constructive way for the benefit of the entire sub-region.
The Ministerial Declaration stressed the urgent need for greater commitment to reduce inequalities in the distribution of water resources and contribute to the development of the southern Mediterranean countries. The European Union and the Union for the Mediterranean will have an important role to play in addressing such key challenges. They will have to further engage in vigorous support policies to promote the co-development of North and South. The Mediterranean countries should also work closely to promote the democratization process, strengthen institutional capacities, improve governance and enhance the peace process in the South-East Basin. Among other management models, the provisions of the EU Water Framework Directive provide valid approaches that could be tested after adaptation in non-EU Mediterranean countries. At the same time, approaches practiced in the South and East of the Mediterranean can considerably assist countries in the North of the region, particularly in the emerging conditions of climate change.
The organizers envisage that the 2nd "Beirut Water Week" will contribute in addressing key IWRM questions in the region, particularly in the context of developing the new Strategy on Water in the Mediterranean:
- How to achieve good water governance at national and local levels
around the Mediterranean
- How to limit the effects of climate change in the countries of the region and properly adapt?
- How to manage sustainably the scarce water resources, ensuring access to sufficient quantity and quality of water for the people and nature, through water demand management application?
- How to sufficiently finance the water sector?
- How to substantially promote education and public awareness on water issues?
- How to prevent the specter of water wars, particularly in the South-Eastern Mediterranean Basin, by encouraging governments to adopt a participatory policy in management?
Country authorities and stakeholders as well as international and regional institutions, initiatives and processes are engaged in the same objectives and are committed to meet the challenges, having a lot of experiences to share. As an example, the results of the first phase of the Country Policy Dialogue on Water in Lebanon within the MED EUWI framework, will be presented and discussed at the 2nd Beirut Water Week. The current phase of the Dialogue aims to review the on-going Lebanese Strategic Plan for Water (2000-2009) and, based on outcomes, launch the preparations for the new Lebanese National IWRM Plan.
The 2nd "Beirut Water Week" contributes to the regional preparatory process for the 5th World Water Forum and particularly its Mediterranean Session.
The process of developing the new Strategy on Water in the Mediterranean provides an opportunity to achieve collectively and in a coordinated manner substantial progress in the fields of human and economic development, social stability and the protection of the environment. The consolidation of a water culture in conditions of peace and security is essential for Mediterranean countries and we invite you to effectively contribute to that.
Dr. Fadi Comair, General Director of Hydraulic and, Electrical Resources, Professor at Notre Dame University
Phone: + 961 1565 099 / 013 ; Fax: + 961 1576 666
|Subject(s)||POLICY-WATER POLICY AND WATER MANAGEMENT|
|Address||Metropolitan Palace Hotel, Beirut - Lebanon|
|Organizer||Lebanese Ministry of Energy and Water and Global Water Partnership - Mediterranean, With the support of Mediterranean Component of the EU Water Initiative, MEDA Water Programme & French Government|
|Period||[04/02/2009 - 08/02/2009]|
|Working language(s)||ARABIC , ENGLISH , FRENCH|