WWAP Publishes Green Accounting for Water Report
August 2012: The World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has published a report, titled “Green Accounting and Data Improvement for Water Resources,” which examines the incorporation of water-related indicators into environmental accounting systems by the UN System of Environmental-Economic Accounts for Water (SEEAW), Eurostat, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Environment Agency (EEA).
The report highlights the importance of water data for improving decision making. It discusses: lifting the veil of ignorance; data definitions and sources; constraints on better water monitoring and reporting; international initiatives for valuing the environment in national accounting; and the WWAP perspective.
The report emphasizes that data is critical in addressing a number of challenges including: water for food production; urban water supply; wastewater treatment; businesses' water footprint; extreme event vulnerability; ecosystem and environmental impacts of water abstraction and pollution; climate change impacts; and gender inequality.
It concludes by welcoming the current initiatives to incorporate water data into decision making and calls for “urgent progress” in the broader collection of water data, particularly for the indicators defined in the 4th World Water Development Report (WWDR4), in order to achieve sustainable water development. [Publication: Green Accounting and Data Improvement for Water Resources] [WWAP Press Release]