08.08.2019 -

Towards Sustainable Water Management in Latin America

© UNESCO Lima Office

There are different experiences of adaptation to climate change in the Latin American and the Caribbean region, which can be adapted, extrapolated or replicated. Within this framework - and with the mission of disseminating these practices -, the Seminar “Towards sustainable water management in Latin America and the Caribbean: exchange of experiences of methods to conserve, increase availability and improve efficiency took place of water use ”took place at the University of Engineering and Technology (UTEC) in the city of Lima, Peru, August 5-6, 2019. Organized by the International Hydrological Program (IHP) of UNESCO, together with the" Water security project and adaptation to climate change in the hydrographic basins of the Peruvian glaciers "(RAHU), the Regional Water Center for Arid and Semi-arid Areas of Latin America and the Caribbean (CAZALAC), in coordination with the Research Center and Water Technology (CITA) of the UTEC.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, water management has been facing increasingly complex challenges over the last decade, in relation the decrease in glaciers and the variation of rainfall patterns due to climate change. In turn, given the population growth and industrialization, the demand for water worldwide has increased. Given the challenges posed by today's world, good sustainable management practices must be developed, implemented and replicated.

Gabriel Mancilla, representative of CAZALAC, pointed out the importance of not only working together from different countries to carry out climate variability and drought works, but also to communicate these achievements: "All technical efforts do not work if we do not make them known, since this saves work in other areas. This type of seminar allows us to learn about experiences that may be useful for our own nations in terms of water management. We must be more efficient in communicating our knowledge and educating both the social and political class, the decision maker. "

To deal with the development and transmission gap of such important initiatives, UNESCO's International Hydrological Program (PHI), with the support of UNESCO Lima, UTEC and the RAHU project, have called for implementers of sustainable water management techniques and professionals -who have analyzed the current situation- from nine countries (Peru, Bolivia, Jamaica, Chile, Costa Rica, Honduras, Mexico, Colombia and Venezuela), which shared both modern and traditional techniques for sustainable water management. The presence of professionals from different countries is of great importance, since - all professional knowledge developed to fight against climate change and droughts- needs an adequate level of dissemination to ensure that it has real and positive impacts.

The Seminar aimed to exchange knowledge on techniques that increase water availability, improve the efficiency of its use in agriculture, or focus on its conservation, as well as discuss and critically analyze the problem.

As a result of the Seminar, a series of successful experiences of sustainable water management for the region were compiled. A critical analysis of the current research situation regarding water conservation will be carried out, which will be sent to decision makers. In the same way, the foundations were laid for a compiled publication - to be published by UNESCO.




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