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News Make every drop of water count

26 August 2021, Rome - As the total amount of freshwater on Earth is fixed and cannot be changed, food production and some of the world's largest cities face serious risks, making efficient and effective allocation of paramount importance, according to two new reports from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

Climate change impacts are already impacting water supply for agricultural production systems, with symptoms ranging from floods and droughts to increased rainfall variability and rising temperatures, as well as competition between users where water stress and scarcity are already significant.

The reports, presented at Stockholm World Water Week 2021, aim to give stakeholders and policy makers around the world critical data about trends in water use and availability. "Progress on change in water-use efficiency" and "Progress on level of water stress" both provide detailed updates on the global status and acceleration needs to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)  6.4.1 and 6.4.2, for which FAO is the UN's custodian agency.

"Water is the essence of life and at the core of the agri-food systems," FAO Director-General QU Dongyu states in the foreword. "The path to water efficiency passes through sustainable agri-food systems."

"Water management is at the core of achieving the SDGs, not only SDG 6 - Water for all - but also SDG 2 - Zero Hunger," said FAO Deputy Director-General Maria Helena Semedo. "Water challenges in agriculture, such as water scarcity, pollution and wastage, must be addressed as a matter of urgency in order to transform and make food systems more resilient, particularly as we confront the alarming complications of climate change."

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News date 30/08/2021
Working language(s) ENGLISH