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Minister of Environment takes part in UN's General Assembly high-level dialogue on Water in New York

posted on 25/03/2013: 1698 views

Dr Rashid Ahmed bin Fahd, Minister of Environment and Water led the UAE delegation to the high-level dialogue on Water held at United Nations' General Assembly in New York at the sidelines of World Water Day.

The interactive dialogue aims to tackle the water challenges and specify topics that require political support, greater international cooperation, explorations of tangible strategies and solutions to overcome the water challenges.

The UAE minister said despite the successes attained over the last years in many areas across the globe regarding the Millennium Development Goals, especially secure of safe water, there are still worries to reach sustainability in many regions in the world.

He noted that the UAE lies in dry geographic zone with less rates of rains, and hence, poses a great burden on ground water amid increasing demands for water to meet the economic boom being witnessed by the UAE.

Fahd said the UAE is set to develop sustainable advanced water desalination technology to ensure future demands, noting that the UAE will set up water desalination plants by using renewable energy at commercial level by 2020. He said the UAE will host World Water Forum by 2018 and World Conference on Water Desalination by 2015.

"Greater international cooperation was critical for the security of fragile and finite global water resources", United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said during a high-level event in observance of World Water Day and the beginning of the International Year of Water Cooperation.

"We cannot prosper without clean, plentiful freshwater," Ban told the General Assembly's High-level Interactive Dialogue on Water Cooperation. Climate change and growing populations around the world meant that the international community had a responsibility to work to more effectively and efficiently protect and manage water, he said.

World Water Day has been observed on 22 March since 1993 when the United Nations General Assembly declared 22 March as World Day for Water. The day was first formally proposed in Agenda 21 of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Observance began in 1993 and has grown significantly ever since; for the general public to show support, it is encouraged for the public to not use their taps throughout the whole day. – Emirates News Agency, WAM


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