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Human rights and water security in the age of uncertainty
Ten years ago, the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council adopted Resolutions acknowledging that water and sanitation are essential to the realization of all human rights. Today, the human rights to water and sanitation (HRWS) and their correlating obligations underpin the increasingly critical work to ensure a healthy environment and a stable climate as prerequisites for the full enjoyment of human rights. Conversely, a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment is integral to the full enjoyment of a wide range of human rights.

Globally, the climate urgency is already having devastating effects on the realization of many human rights, with risks and impacts from extreme events disproportionately affecting vulnerable populations and marginalized groups. State governments at all levels, development agencies, and other actors need to think differently about their responsibilities and ensuing responses by adapting water governance resources and management to meet this ‘new normal’.

This virtual high-level session brought together two UN experts – Dr Léo Heller, Special Rapporteur on “the Human Rights to Water and Sanitation”, and Dr David R. Boyd, Special Rapporteur on “Human Rights and the Environment” in a conversation moderated by Catarina de Albuquerque, Sanitation and Water for All and f. Special Rapporteur on the HRWS. It also brought together panellists involved in the realization of human rights during the past decade, from:

Finnish Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry,
Finnish Consulting Group,
OHCHR,
UNICEF,
Global Institute for Water, Environment and Health,
Center of Environmental and Social Studies.

The webinar recording is available here: https://siwi.zoom.us/rec/share/O1tTh9-kGiFgMvTitpT0ipv6T9S0vJ8.

Thanks and see you again,
Jenny Grönwall, UNDP-SIWI Water Governance Facility,
Kristian Kumlin, Finnish Water Forum
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