About the first question: In the private sector, i would like to find a "good practice" about technologies and procedures for production. "Best Available Technologies" standards defined per sector by EPA and EU may be a first option, but I think they still can improve a lot, and in developing countries, as in LatinAmerica, there is not an alternative as far as I know (and even less in spanish or portugese). So still a lot of work to do, but we have a start point.
1 year 2 months
My answers to Water and Development, that I expect can to complement previous interventions:
How can Water and Development help mainstream sustainability issues related to water to the center of decision-making and strategy definition by governments and business?
1) Through successful corporate water stewardship cases and learned lessons that are transferred to peers. In the medium term, they can present a baseline for formulating strategies (both from governmental and business associations). 2) Through solid indicators of strategies success and continuous monitoring of them. 3) through dialog between public-private but also with civil society, especially consumers and communities on sites affected (positively or negatively) by productive processes.
How can Water and Development help improving society resilience to water issues, giving that water availability is reducing in most countries and the consumption is increasing?
1) Through development schemes that have into account water limitations and opportunities for promoting or not certain water intensive productive activities, or search for alternatives 2) Through consumer education towards more sustainable consumption patterns 3) through more stringent voluntary and mandatory standards towards more sustainable production patterns
Water issues are regional, hard to solve individually by local governments or companies. How can Water and Development stimulate collaborative actions that will lead to a sustainable use of water resources?
I think because water is essential for all stakeholders, it is a good entry point for dialogue. So Water Forums, probably mediated by public institutions, are important platforms to stimulate agreements that allow fair and inclusive water access, establishing priorities in a territory (i.e. First is domestic water, second is water for food security, third is water for economic development..). Water is also a concept that supports platforms for collaborative actions, like "El Agua nos Une - SuizAgua", a public-private partnership in which I'm involved. This iniative is present in Colombia, Chile and Peru, includes large corporations, business associations, public institutions and stakeholders in the companies territory, and its strategy includes several of the things I have mentioned before. The iniative has being working with peers in several other partners in the Latin American region, in order to build capacities. Other good initiative is "the Water Action Hub" from the UN Global Compact; it operates globally like a Virtual Water Forum.
Thank you for the opportunity to contribute, I am a day late but fortunately we can still participate.
In a era of Internet and web 2.0 and 3.0, workshops and face-to-face events are still important mechanisms for sharing knowledge and capacities, and construct communities of practice. For example, my institution supports one called AGUASAN www.aguasan.ch (you can find event's memories there if interested). This year I had the opportunity to attend and I think this event give you wide view of water and sanitation solutions not only from the technical point of view but also from the institutional and financial sustainability issues. Because there are attendants from all around the world, it was an open-eyes about how we all address same difficulties in different cultural and economical context, and even consider as feasible alternatives that iniatially i though were not viable in my country (i.e. vermocomposting for wastes of sanitation).
Finally, following all advances and motivation of your peers, is also a boost for your own motiviation to work harder on solving these important issues.
1 year 3 months
Yes, surely. At this moment they are finishing compiling conclussions and analysis of discussions rounds. I think in one or two weeks the memories will be available.
About the importance of difference water culture, i would like to mention two aspects:
- The first one is language. An explanation about a good practice (for example, related to "hardware": dig a water well, pipe lying, and others more difficult to explaint related to "software") must be adjusted to the specific jargon of the place, even if t he practice is in the same language. For example: in Colombia we cal "plomero" to the plumber, but in Peru they call him "Grafitero". A good practice shared from peru to Colombia may not be well understood if previously the language is not adjusted. They seem like not so important, but words matter a lot.
- The second one is about adaptation of technologies. Even though the principle can be the same: i.e. a dry toilet, the aparience must appealing to the cultural context of people in order to be used. Following the simple example of the dry toilet, the way Asian cultures sit in the bathroom can be different from the way we sit in LatinAmerica and Europa. That's also a matter of respecting traditions of the local context, so that the solutions that are being brought don't imposse other culture over their own.
Other aspect to consider, not related to cultural context but the local context, is adaptation to materials available.