IUCN at Africa Water Week

06 November 2009 | News story

Mainstreaming climate change in integrated water resources management will be a key topic at the 2nd Africa Water Week in Johannesburg, 9-13 November.

Fears over climate change focus on projected increases in the severity and frequency of droughts, floods and storms, accelerated melting of glaciers and rising sea-levels. Climate change adaptation starts with managing water-related risks across sectors in the frame of integrated water resource management. Effective climate change adaptation takes place at the local level, in villages, towns and cities supported by coordinated decision making about how river basins and coastal zones are developed and managed.

Dr. Emmanuel Mwendera, regional water and wetlands coordinator, will present a case study of the Pangani River Basin in Tanzania, "Mainstreaming climate change in integrated water resources management".

The IUCN Water Programme and its partners are mainstreaming climate change adaptation into the development and management of water resources in the Pangani River Basin (PRB) to improve the resilience of communities to climate related shocks. The Pangani River Basin in northern Tanzania covers an area of 43,650 km2, and has an estimated population of about 3.4 million. The basin has the 2nd highest agricultural output in Tanzania, produces 17% of Tanzania’s hydropower and includes some of the country’s precious biodiversity hotspots. Water security in the basin is characterized by frequent cycles of droughts and floods, increasing the vulnerability of communities to climate variability and change. There is an increasing demand for water, due to population and economic growth. Tensions over limited water resources are increasing, particularly among upstream and downstream users, domestic and commercial users, and among large and small-scale users.

IUCN will also host a side event, "Managing water across boundaries", on Tuesday 10th November from 18:00- 19:30. This side event will facilitate a panel discussion on the realties of benefit sharing across transboundary waters. The event will introduce the IUCN toolkit SHARE: Managing Water Across Boundaries, which provides guidance on managing transboundary water resources more equitably and sustainably.

For more information, please contact:
Emmanuel.Mwendera@iucn.org
Katharine.Cross@iucn.org