Iran: Collective global cooperation needed to tackle water crisis

IRNA – The Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Gholamali Khoshroo said on Friday that collective regional and global cooperation is need to tackle water crisis facing many countries of the world.

Addressing a high level gathering ‘ International Decade for Action “Water for Sustainable Development” 2018-2028, Khoshroo said ‘This is a timely event to address one of the most severe challenges, especially for arid and semi-arid countries.’

”We are at a critical juncture wherein many countries are on the threshold of a water crisis while simultaneously facing a number of extreme challenges. It is urgent to develop and formulate our collective regional and global cooperation in this Decade to tackle this crisis, particularly for trans-boundary water challenges,’ Khoshroo said.

The following is the full text of the Iranian ambassador’s speech:

Statement by H.E. Mr. Gholamali Khoshroo
Ambassador and Permanent Representative
Of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations
At the High Level event
International Decade for Action “water for Sustainable Development” 2018-2028

(New York – 22 March, 2018)
In the Name of Allah
The Compassionate, the Merciful

Mr. President:

At the outset, I would like to thank the President of General Assembly for organizing this high level event. I would also like to express my gratitude to the President of Tajikistan, His Excellency Emomali Rahmon, for initiating this Water Action Decade. The Islamic Republic of Iran attaches great importance to the International Decade for Action “Water for Sustainable Development” 2018-2028.

I would also like to align my statement with the G 77 and China.

This is a timely event to address one of the most severe challenges, especially for arid and semi-arid countries.

We are at a critical juncture wherein many countries are on the threshold of a water crisis while simultaneously facing a number of extreme challenges. It is urgent to develop and formulate our collective regional and global cooperation in this Decade to tackle this crisis, particularly for trans-boundary water challenges.
An enhanced cooperation among countries along with the coordination of activities with relevant UN entities to support member states is a key to success in improving the implementation of the goals and targets, including SDG6.
We hope that the Decade can work towards increasing public awareness and facilitating the sharing of good practices which can provide a platform for advocacy, networking and partnership. Such efforts can build and promote water dialogue and cooperation as well as increase means of implementation at all levels for the follow-up of the water-related goals and targets.

Mr. President:
The United Nations system, in line with SDG6, should contribute to the realization of the relevant goals and targets, including through consensus-building for regional and international policies, initiatives and actions as well as facilitating mobilization of means of implementation at various levels for ensuring follow-up and achievement of the goal and related targets.

Mr. President:
We see the issue of water as a priority. In this context, a number of initiatives and plans have been taken and envisioned, in line with the Sixth National Development Plan adopted in March 2017. Allow me to briefly outline some of the major policies, plans and strategies taken in the field of water on this National Development Plan:
• Creating a comprehensive integrated water resources management system for each and all of the country’s water basins;
• Improving water-use efficiency, taking into account the socio-economic and security aspects of water extraction, supply, maintenance and use;
• Implementing integrated water resources management to all the basins;
• Stabilizing and rehabilitating national groundwater bodies;
• Enhancing the water quality index for the environmental and all the other end-use applications;
• Promoting water-use efficiency in agriculture;
• Developing effective methods to prevent over-exploitation of water resources in the basins; and
• Developing a comprehensive national monitoring system for preservation of water resources, water use and water quality.

Mr. President:
We continue to seek cooperative opportunities that can further strengthen our collaboration with countries at the regional and sub regional levels with a view to setting an efficient framework to move towards achieving our sustainable development goals.

I thank you, Mr. Chairman.