How do you support a massive energy development project without “officially” supporting it? In Africa, the U.S. government may have found a way.
Construction of the Inga 3 dam in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, while controversial, could, by some experts’ estimation, achieve U.S. President Barack Obama’s ambitious goal for Power Africa in one fell swoop and provide 40,000 megawatts of energy to a power-starved continent. A chorus of African developers want Inga 3 to happen, but the dam is riddled with risk and could “tarnish” the U.S. initiative’s brand.
So Power Africa will not “officially” endorse the massive and controversial dam project, but instead support a process by which African leaders will prioritize and “rally around” their top regional power priorities, likely including the megadam project on the Congo river.
Will address the nexus of water and energy and it will be coordinated by the United Nations University (UNU) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) on behalf of UN-Water.
Water and energy are closely interlinked and interdependent. Energy generation and transmission requires utilization of water resources, particularly for hydroelectric, nuclear, and thermal energy sources. Recent interest in biofuels also creates an incremental demand on water resources; the latest World Water Development Report (2012) predicts that even a nominal increase in biofuel demand (say 5% of road transport by 2030, as predicted by International Energy Agency) could push up the water demand by as much as 20% of the water used for agriculture worldwide. Additionally, biofuel production is linked to increases in water pollution through increased used of fertilizers and agricultural chemicals. Conversely, about 8% of the global energy generation is used for pumping, treating and transporting water to various consumers. Co-production of water and energy, as is the case for geothermal energy generation, offers interesting opportunities to energy- and water-scarce countries.
A day to celebrate, a day to change, a day to prepare.
World Water Day is marked on 22 March every year. It’s a day to celebrate water. It’s a day to make a difference for the members of the global population who suffer from water related issues. It’s a day to prepare for how we manage water in the future.
In 1993, the United Nations General Assembly designated 22 March as the first World Water Day. 22 years later, World Water Day is celebrated around the world shining the spotlight on a different issue every year. This issue is also the theme of the annual UN World Water Development Report which is launched on World Water Day.
In 2015, the theme for World Water Day is 'Water and Sustainable Development'. It’s about how water links to all areas we need to consider to create the future we want.
Each year, UN-Water provides resources to inspire celebrations for World Water Day.
Many UN entities work on water issues - distributing drinking water during disasters, protecting ecosystems, making sure that water is of sufficient quality, ensuring that our cities have enough water infrastructure, measuring progress of access to sanitation, looking at how we will have enough water to make food. The list is long.
Many organizations around the world also work on these issues. To be as strong, as effective and to have as big of an impact as possible, these organizations come together to work through UN-Water.
For World Water Day, UN-Water identifies upcoming challenges and sets the theme for the years to come. World Water Day 2016 will be around ‘Water and Jobs’, in 2017 around ‘Wastewater’ and in 2018 around ‘Nature-based Solutions for Water’.