World Bank, IDB Propose Regional Agenda on Water and Climate Change for LAC

3 December 2010: The elements for a regional agenda on water and climate change for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) were presented at a Dialogue for Water and Climate Change (D4WCC) side event held during the 16th session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC (COP 16), in Cancun, Mexico.  

The document, "Challenges and Opportunities for Water-Based Adaptation to Climate Change: Elements for a Regional Agenda," is the result of a year-long regional dialogue coordinated by Mexico's National Water Commission (Conagua) in association with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the World Bank and WWF, among others.

Discussion of a possible regional agenda began at a Mexico City workshop organized by Conagua in June 2010, followed by its consideration by the XI Conference of Ibero-American Water Directors (CODIA) held in Mexico City, in August 2010. The resulting draft document was presented to a Panel of Experts and Ministers in Adaptation to Climate Change in LAC during World Water Week in Stockholm, Sweden, on 7 September 2010, then further revised in light of comments received from Brazil, Chile, Panama, Peru, Spain and Uruguay.

The document has nine essential messages, calling for: incorporating climate change adaptation as a key strategic element in Integrated Water Resources Management; strengthening the ‘environmental dimension' in LAC water resources management; explicitly considering equity and poverty alleviation in the development of water-based climate change adaptation policies; strengthening LAC hydro-climate information systems to support timely and preventive climate change adaptation measures; continuing the institutional capacity development process for water-based adaptation to climate change; developing and adapting water resources infrastructure needs to respond to climate change impacts and to available financing sources; establishing effective coordination, collaboration and social participation mechanisms; and increasing efforts in LAC to generate knowledge and train professionals on water-based adaptation to climate change. [Conagua Press Release (in Spanish)] [Publication: Challenges and Opportunities for Water-Based Adaptation to Climate Change: Elements for a Regional Agenda] [Publication (in Spanish): Retos y Oportunidades en Adaptación al Cambio Climático en Materia de Agua: Elementos para una Agenda Regional]