The Water Environment Federation (WEF) is now an official partner of UN-Water, which coordinates the efforts of United Nations (UN) entities and international organizations working on water and sanitation issues.
The designation comes as WEF continues to focus on its role as a global water organization, with members in 78 countries, Member Associations and Corresponding Associations representing 36 countries, and partnering organizations on every continent (except Antarctica).
Last year the WEF Board of Trustees unanimously approved a position statement in support of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Water professionals have a direct role in meeting SDG 6, which calls for sustainable, universal access to water and sanitation. Some of the targets associated with SDG 6 include water-reuse volumes, reductions in untreated wastewater, and water-supply resilience, which WEF members help address every day.
“WEF is honored and excited to become a partner of UN-Water, working alongside the world’s most influential and prestigious water organizations,” said WEF President Lynn Broaddus. “This designation recognizes the critical work that WEF and its members do to advance global access to water and sanitation, We look forward to collaborating with UN-Water and its partners, and continuing to advance progress on SDG 6 as well as the many other health, education, and security goals that tie to it”
There is no single UN entity dedicated exclusively to water issues. Over 30 UN organizations carry out water and sanitation programs, reflecting the fact that water issues run through all of the UN’s main focus areas. UN-Water’s role is to coordinate so that the UN family delivers a unified response to water-related challenges. The overarching focus of members and partners, like WEF, is to support UN Member States to sustainably manage water and sanitation.
UN-Water’s members and partners have helped place water and sanitation at the heart of recent milestone agreements such as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the 2015-2030 Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the 2015 Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development, and the 2015 Paris Agreement within the UN Convention Framework on Climate Change.
UN-Water’s consolidated technical advice from UN entities and external organizations helped shape Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG 6) to “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.” As a result, SDG 6 and its various targets take the entire water and sanitation cycle into account.