UN General Assembly hold High-Level meeting on water

19 March, 2021

On 18 March, the UN General Assembly (UNGA) held a High-Level Meeting on the water-related goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda.

Opening Segment
The Opening Statements was delivered by the President of the General Assembly and other high-level representatives including a keynote speaker. Watch the recording of the whole Opening Segment here.

High-Level Plenary
Member States shared their experiences and lessons on promoting the progress of achieving SDG6 at national, regional and global level and accelerating concrete actions through multilateral cooperation to meet the water-related goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda.

  • Statements delivered during the High-level meeting.

On the occasion of the High-Level Meeting, countries also joined efforts to issue a cross regional statement on water. The Statement was signed by 161 countries, welcomed the Meeting and acknowledged the consultative process. It also emphasized the countries’ support to the UN and urged the adoption of a UN system-wide approach.

Panel 1: Data and Information and Governance
In this interactive discussion, panelists presented concrete acceleration actions for water and sanitation focusing on two of the accelerators set forth in the SDG 6 Global Acceleration Framework: data and information and governance. Demonstrating how to scale-up international cooperation and accelerate concrete action to meet the water-related goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda. The session further aimed to generate commitments for the SDG Acceleration Actions on SDG 6.

  • Ms. Henrietta Fore (Moderator) Executive Director, UNICEF
  • Ms. Claudia Sheinbaum Pardo Mayor, Mexico City
  • Ms. Xiaoyuan Ren Founder and Director, MyH20
  • Dr. David Kreamer President, International Association of Hydrogeologists
  • Ms. Nuraini Rahma Hanifa Secretary-General, U-INSPIRE Alliance
  • Ms. Sareen M. Malik Executive Secretary, African Civil Society Network on Water and Sanitation

Panel 2: Financing, Innovation and Capacity Building
In this interactive discussion, panellists presented acceleration actions for water and sanitation focusing on three of the accelerators set forth in the SDG 6 Global Acceleration Framework: financing, innovation and capacity development. They demonstrated how to scale-up international cooperation and accelerate concrete action in these areas to meet the water-related goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda. The session further aimed to generate commitments for the SDG Acceleration Actions on SDG 6.

  • Mr. Achim Steiner (Moderator) Administrator, UN Development Programme
  • Ms. Jennifer Sara Global Director, World Bank
  • Mr. Clive Allison Global Sustainability Director, Unilever
  • Dr. Paul O’Callghan Founder and CEO, Blue Tech Research
  • Mr. Ernest Gibson Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change of the UN
  • Ms. Shamila Nair Bedouelle Assistant Director-General, UNESCO
  • Watch the recording of Panel 1 and Panel 2 here.
  • Watch the ‘Water and Sanitation: One message – Accelerate!’ video here.
  • Watch the WMO Water Climate Coalition video here.

 

Spotlight videos by Civil society organizations (CSOs)

  • Dr. Han, Seung-soo, Chair, High-level Experts and Leaders Panel on Water and Disasters (HELP)
  • Dr. Mark Smith, Director General, International Water Management Institute (IWMI)
  • Mr. Dario Soto-Abril, Executive Secretary, Global Water Partnership (GWP)
  • Ms. Paloma Martín, Madrid Regional Minister for the Environment, Land Planning and Sustainability, and President of Canal De Isabel II
  • Ms. Rosie Wheen, Chief Executive, WaterAid Australia
  • Ms. Martha Rojas Urrego, Secretary General, Ramsar Convention on Wetlands Secretariat
  • Ms. Vedika Bhandarkar, Chief Global Impact Officer, Water.org
  • Fábio Abrahão, Director of Infrastructure, Concessions and PPPs, Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES)
  • Ms. Dorit Matmon, Senior Hydrogeologist
  • Mr. Stuart Orr, Freshwater Manager, World Wildlife Fund
  • Ms. Aida Kabo, Sanitation Program Officer, Speak up Africa
  • Mr. Torgny Holmgren, Executive Director, Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI)
  • Mr. David Boys, Deputy General Secretary, Public Services International (PSI)
  • Ms. Lesha Witmer, Steering Committee Member, Women for Water Partnership
  • Mr. Mamadou Dia, President, AuqaFed
  • Dr. Jae-hyeon Park, President, Asia Water Council
  • Maria Marshall, Barbados, UNICEF Youth Champion
  • Emmanuel Cosmas Msoka, Tanzania, UNICEF youth Champion
  • Dewie Anggraini, Indonesia, UNICEF Youth Champion

 

  • Watch the Spotlight videos by Civil society organizations (CSOs) here.

Thereafter, the was continued and additional statements will be delivered in the General Assembly on World Water Day, 22 March.

The meeting contributed to preparations for a conference in 2023 to review progress of the current Decade of Action – Water for Sustainable Development. The UN Conference on the Midterm Comprehensive Review of the Implementation of the Objectives of the International Decade for Action, “Water for Sustainable Development,” 2018–2028, will be held from 22-24 March 2023. It will be the first global conference on water since 1977.