The United Nations has long been addressing the global crisis caused by unsafe water and sanitation and growing demands on the world’s water resources to meet human, economic and environmental needs.
In December 2017 UN Member States adopted United Nations General Assembly resolution 71/222 on an International Decade for Action on ‘Water for Sustainable Development’ 2018-2028.
In response to the ambitious 2030 Agenda, the Water Action Decade will accelerate efforts towards meeting water-related challenges, including limited access to safe water and sanitation, increasing pressure on water resources and ecosystems, and an exacerbated risk of droughts and floods.
Previous United Nations initiatives included The United Nations Water Conference (1977), the International Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Decade (1981-1990), the International Conference on Water and the Environment (1992), Earth Summit (1992) and the International Decade for Action “Water for Life”, 2005-2015.
Recent milestone agreements include the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the 2015-2030 Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the 2015 Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development, and the 2015 Paris Agreement within the UN Convention Framework on Climate Change.