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No. 18 (234) November 2013


Moscow, Russia, 8 November 2013

The participants of the Conference of EECCA water-management organizations “Community of Water Professionals - a Framework for Interstate Water Cooperation” gathered in Moscow on the 8th of November 2013, discussed delivered reports and speeches and noted high significance of maintaining professional unity and information exchange and of best practices dissemination within the Network of water-management organization from EECCA.

Regular information of the Network’s members about measures taken in their countries to improve management and implement integrated water resources management and dissemination of information about new publications, software products and training materials contribute to broader horizons of water professionals and encourage progress in the water sector within EECCA space.

Further development of NWO EECCA is seen in strengthening of the Network’s national centers, their equipping and involvement in their activities of more water-management, academic and non-governmental organizations in order to create a kind of public platform, improve water management for better solution of problems and meeting of challenges that the global water community faces, in the light of specific regional features.

Joint activity of the members regarding transboundary water cooperation is of particular importance. The positive experience of such cooperation on Russian-Ukrainian, Russian-Kazakh, and Russian-Azerbaijani transboundary water bodies may serve an example of efficient water use and water pollution control.

The participants underlined:

  • as a matter of concern – by 6 Mha reduced irrigated area in EECCA space;
  • decreased quantity and quality and reliability of accounting water quantities and quality;
  • continuing pollution of water, including in transboundary bodies;
  • positive role, as a water development promoter, of Global Water Partnership and UNECE;
  • further enhancement and improvement of cooperation between the NWO EECCA and the GWP for Central Asia and Caucasus;
  • a need for enhanced dialogues and mutual understanding among riparian states.

In this context, the following is proposed:

  • Intensify exchange of information with the focus on dissemination of knowledge and best practices accumulated in the region.
  • Organize training in major areas contributing to improved water management (IWRM, water use technologies, IS, international water law, water diplomacy) in form of both traditional training courses and e-learning.
  • Develop (regional and national) knowledge hubs for assistance to water users at various hierarchical levels.

The Conference recommended the NWO EECCA Board to concentrate its efforts on the following:

  • Strengthen institutional and financing bases of NWO EECCA.
  • Organize regular exchange of information on:
    • Status of water resources (quantity and quality);
    • Integrated water management and use;
    • Water use economics;
    • Water restoration and protection;
    • Problems occurring in transboundary water bodies;
    • Development of information systems, including e-databases on water quantity and quality;
    • Hydrological and water-management modeling;
    • Environmental safety of water use;
    • IT in water sector and implementation of SCADA systems;
    • Training, lifelong education, advanced professional training;
    • International water law, its development and application;
    • National water law.

The Conference considers involvement of the general public and non-governmental self-regulating organizations in solution of water-related problems as top priority. Thus, it seems advisable to make use of Basin councils that comprise all water users in given basin. It is necessary to establish close cooperation with the ICID Working group on irrigation and drainage in the states under socio-economic transformation.

The Conference recommended exploring a possibility to establish within the Network an Expert Council for independent assessment of anticipated engineering structures, especially those planned in transboundary water bodies.

The participants thanked GWP CACENA and UNECE for support and assistance provided to the Network, including in organization of this Conference.

The participants renewed their thanks to the Russian Government for the long standing support of NWO EECCA.