In recognition of UNESCO and the Kingdom of the Netherlands signing the agreement on the establishment of the International Groundwater Resource Assessment Centre (IGRAC) we organised a Side Event at this year's WWF 6 in Marseille as this was the right moment to celebrate, reflect and look forward.
Special guests at our side event were Ms Elaine Alwayn, Director of Department Water and Soil, Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment, The Netherlands, Abdin Salih, Director, Division of Water Sciences at UNESCO and Ms Alice Aureli, Chief of Groundwater Section, UNESCO IHP (International Hydrological Programme). Addressing the audience, they opened the floor for discussions about imminent challenges in the field of groundwater, IGRAC's recent successes and where to go from here. A detailed agenda of the IGRAC's side event is available here.
Next to organising a side event, IGRAC contributed to a number of sessions at the forum, may it be as moderator/facilitator or as expert in the panel. The memorable sessions are certainly:
- Groundwater: Can We Put the 'Integrated' in Integrated Water Resources Management?,
- IWRM through the lens of water security, adaptive water management and international legal instruments for good governance
- GEF Communities of Practices on Surface and Groundwater: Ready to Exchange Your Knowledge?
- Support to assessment, monitoring and management internationally shared ground waters
As part of the UN family, IGRAC had its booth at the UN WATER pavilion, promoting the global importance of groundwater resources. We talked to many of you about our activities and plans. Our main product exposed at the booth was the 2012 Update of the ‘Transboundary Aquifers of the World' Map.