Wednesday, 14 January 2015

India Water Week 2015

This week (13 – 17 January 2015) celebrates India Water Week—a time to reflect on the conservation and utilisation of water resources in a resource-constrained world. Australia is proud to be a partner country in this important campaign in raising awareness and sharing knowledge of Earth’s precious resource. Australian representatives are co-chairing and speaking at various events throughout the week. Australia has a strong track record of water research and management, allowing us the opportunity to share our findings to benefit those around the world. One example is Australia’s expertise in river basin management and development of the SOURCE model (created by e-water) to simulate all aspects of water resource systems to support integrated planning, operations and governance from urban, catchment and river basin scales including human ecological influences.

Source: India Water Week website

Some stark figures highlighted by the Government of India show:
  • Over 1.5 billion people do not have access to clean, safe water.
  • About 82 million hectares of agricultural area is devoid of irrigation support.
  • In India alone, water borne diseases cost the economy 73 million working days per year.*

The Government of India is engaging stakeholders from across the globe including researchers, decision-makers, politicians and entrepreneurs to tackle local, regional, national and global issues for mutual benefit and goodwill.

The theme for the event, water management for sustainable development, has been decided in line with the Sustainable Development Goals 2015 which are being finalised by the UN after broad stakeholder consultation.
The sub-themes for this year’s event focus on:
  • Water for sustaining life
  • Sustainable drinking water supply
  • Water for sustainable energy development
  • Sustainable industrial development and water
  • Water management for sustainable agriculture
  • Stakeholder cooperation for water sustainability
  • Sustainable urbanisation and water-related issues
  • Multi-sectoral and cross-cutting issues in water resources management

Source: Sharda University

These topics are being covered through a series of seminars, panel discussions, brain-storming sessions, case studies and a plenary session in New Delhi. There is also an exhibition running parallel to the main conference based on the same theme of water management for sustainable development. The exhibition is showcasing the technologies, latest developments and solutions for sustainable development in agriculture and irrigation, drinking water supplies in rural and urban areas, and for industrial water use.

ACIAR has a strong interest in land and water resources; current projects include ‘Improved village scale groundwater recharge and management for agriculture and livelihood development in India’, ‘Improved irrigation water management to increase rice productivity in Cambodia’ and ‘Optimising canal and groundwater management to assist water user associations in maximising crop production and managing salinisation’. For further information on ACIAR’s land and water resources programs, please contact Dr Evan Christen or visit ACIAR’s LWR website for a full listing.

By Elise Crabb, External Engagement and Media Presence Officer, ACIAR

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