UN-Water Report Highlights Achievements of Decade for Action
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Significant achievements during the International Decade for Action: Water for Life 2005-2015 include achieving the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target of halving the proportion of the population without sustainable access to safe drinking water, and declaration of the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation by the UN General Assembly (UNGA), according to a report by UN-Water.

water_for_lifeMarch 2015: Significant achievements during the International Decade for Action: Water for Life 2005-2015 include achieving the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target of halving the proportion of the population without sustainable access to safe drinking water, and declaration of the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation by the UN General Assembly (UNGA), according to a report by UN-Water.

The report titled, ‘Report on the Achievements during the International Decade for Action: Water for Life 2005-2015,’ reviews progress on the decade’s four goals: a greater focus on water-related issues at all levels; implementation of water-related programmes and projects; participation and involvement of women in water-related development efforts; and furtherance of water cooperation. Achievements include: a higher-level focus on water during the Decade, including recognition of the relationship between water and sustainable development and inclusion of a stand-alone water goal in the proposed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); the launch and implementation of the UN-Water Decade Programme on Capacity Development (UNW-DPC), which has conducted more than 100 capacity-building activities, and the UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC); and the launch of the ‘Call to Action on Sanitation.’

The report notes that despite achievement of the MDG target on drinking water, 800 million people remain without access to an improved water source, many more lack a safe, sustainable water supply, and disparities persist between and within countries. Further, the MDG sanitation target is the most lagging of the MDGs; although 1.8 billion people gained access to improved sanitation facilities since 1990, another 2.5 billion still lack access, according to the report.

The report reflects that setting international goals and targets has helped to drive change in the water sector, but emphasizes additional efforts are needed to realize the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation, address financial, human and institutional constraints in the sanitation and hygiene subsector, and improve global freshwater quality, among other remaining challenges.

The UNGA proclaimed the decade in 2003 with the aim of promoting efforts to fulfill international commitments on water and water-related issues by 2015.

UN-Water is the UN inter-agency mechanism for all freshwater and sanitation-related matters, and includes 31 UN entities and 37 partners. [UN-Water Press Release] [Publication: Report on the Achievements during the International Decade for Action: Water for Life 2005-2015]

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