Sustainable water management led by local governments is the key topic of the 4th Local and Regional Authorities Conference held on 13-14 April at the HICO in Gyeongju. Over 250 local government representatives, international organizations and NGO's from 26 countries including Japan, France, Mexico, Spain, Turkey, Vietnam and China have joined the conference.
The Forum was dedicated to four central issues:
The Forum identified future targets and outlined measures to enhance integrated water management policy and service provision led by local governments in the context of UN’s Sustainable Development Goals that will be adopted in September, 2015.
The strategy document calls on the national governments to establish a foundation for the local and regional authorities to be actively involved in the definition and implementation of political strategies of international consensus taken at the national and supra-national level for sustainable water management.
The local and regional strategies are:
The pilot project is launched by Korea's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport, together with local governments from Korea. It also receives support from the Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Public Safety and Security and related public corporations.
Aims: to strengthen the collaboration among the central ministries, and between the central and local governments; to expand citizens’ participation and connecting the regional areas with the world at the local and global level.
Participants: Regions covering 21 urban rivers across Korea, including Gyeonggi Province, Busan Metropolitan City, Gyeonsangnam-do, and Chungcheongnam-do. Stakeholders aforementioned, along with citizens, will jointly take part in every step of the project from developing flood prevention plan to the completion of the project. The project will be a pioneering initiative that solidifies the outcomes of the Local and Regional Authorities Process. The project process and accomplishments will be reported at the 8th World Water Forum 2018 in Brazil.
Significance and expected outcomes: The local and regional authorities that have participated in the 4th LRAs conference described the project as “a creative and collaborative implementation project established on the foundation of participation of various stakeholders” and expressed their expectation that “it will encourage and promote more implementation projects around the world”.
Now in its fourth year, the Local and Regional Process was introduced at the 4th World Water Forum (Mexico City, 2006) as the official conference of the Political Process. The Local and Regional Authorities Conference is designed for local and regional governments to identify the water challenges they face and share their experiences, solutions and achievements in addressing these water issues.
The Process acknowledges the key role of LRAs in water management:
The Local and Regional Authorities Process is jointly organized by the ICLEI, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), UN-HABITAT/Global Water Operators’ Partnerships Alliance(GWOPA), World Water Council (WWC), Daegu Gyeongbuk Development Institute, and National Committee of 7th World Water Forum.
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