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UN urges world not to take water for granted

October 4, 2023 at 2:22 pm

Qu Dongyu, Director-General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) on September 12, 2023 [EVARISTO SA/AFP via Getty Images]

The UN, on Wednesday, urged the world to stop taking water for granted, underlining the need for intensified efforts towards a resilient, sustainable water-secure and food-secure future, Anadolu Agency reports.

In his opening remarks at the two-day Rome Water Dialogue, the second of its kind, Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Director-General, Qu Dongyu, stressed: “We must stop taking water for granted.”

As agriculture accounts for more than 70 per cent of the planet’s freshwater withdrawals, Qu said: “By increasing efficiency, reducing negative impacts and reusing wastewater, agriculture holds the solutions to the global water crisis, as well as the key to achieving global water and food security.”

He also underlined the need for a

“4Rs” approach, based on the principles of reduce, reuse, recycle and replace, to effectively address the severe water challenges mostly due to water-related natural disasters

The water-related disasters resulted in direct economic costs of more than $200 billion in 2021 alone, he noted.

The dialogue focuses on integrated water resource management for agricultural and food security.

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