March 25, 2021 Climate changeEnvironment

IWA supports study on climate-resilient water management

IWA, along with other partner organisations such as The Nature Conservancy, is an official endorser of the new report “Integrating EbA and IWRM for climate-resilient water management” published by GIZ.

Daniela Bemfica, Strategic Programmes Manager at IWA, says:

“IWA is pleased to endorse this informative report on improving climate resilience in a range of geographies. Ecosystem-based adaptation measures can reduce the risks of climate change to people, and enable resilient water management in multiple settings. The report provides practical and inclusive examples that professionals, including those in low- and middle-income countries, can utilise as part of their activities.”

The study acknowledges that pressures on global water resources are constantly increasing along with growing global water demands, and climate change is further aggravating this situation. The report finds that Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) approaches support the protection, restoration and improvement of ecosystem services. These provide a mechanism to increase climate resilience, which in turn supports resilient water management in the face of climate change.

Furthermore, it supports reconciliation among water users with competing interests through participatory planning and management approaches. Climate change as a global challenge is endangering the key objectives of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM), compromising both sustainable social and economic development and ecosystem health.

The study suggests that IWRM should put more emphasis on promoting the ability and strengths of healthy ecosystems to reduce vulnerabilities to climate change in watersheds. Integrating the concepts and approaches of EbA and IWRM could support both the systematic mainstreaming of climate change adaptation (CCA) and risk management into IWRM, and the proactive development of healthy ecosystems as part of an overall adaptation strategy for climate-resilient watersheds.

This study explores how the two leading approaches in water resources management and ecosystem thinking for climate change adaptation – i.e. IWRM and EbA – can be merged to achieve greater climate resilience in watersheds.

The study identifies the way forward with the need to further integrate IWRM and EbA for climate-resilient water management.

Download the full report.