Announcing World Water Day: 22 March 2011

World Water Day is held annually on 22 March, as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

World Water Day, 22 March 2011: "Water for Cities - Responding to the urban challenge"

This year, the theme will be "Water for Cities: Responding to the Urban Challenge".

The objective of World Water Day 2011 is to focus international attention on the impact of rapid urban population growth, industrialization and uncertainties caused by climate change, conflicts and natural disasters on urban water systems.

The theme was chosen as it is the first time in human history that most of the world's population lives in cities: 3.3 billion people ...and the urban landscape continues to grow. Over 38% of the growth is represented by expanding slums, while city populations are increasing faster than infrastructure can cope.

This year's theme, "Water for cities: responding to the urban challenge", aims to highlight and encourage governments, organizations, communities, and individuals to actively engage in addressing the challenge of urban water management.

World Water Day 2011 will be celebrated in Cape Town with a 3-day fair and exhibition from 20 - 22 March 2011. Registration is now open, click here. The African Ministers' Council on Water (AMCOW) is joining UN-HABITAT and UN-Water in co-organizing the official  Cape Town World Water Day 2011 event. Ceremonies will be hosted by the Government of South Africa at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

World Water Day was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development as an international day to celebrate freshwater. The United Nations General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day.

World Water Day Website:

IUCN Member Activities:

The Environment Society of Oman: “You will never miss the water till your Falaj runs dry”

Historical & Cultural Research Centre, India: "Cleaning up the stepwell of Ambaji - Gujarat"


For further information, please contact:

Work area: 
Disaster Risk Reduction
Climate Change
Social Policy
Environmental Law
South America
North America
East and Southern Africa
West and Central Africa
West Asia
Project and Initiatives: 
Mangroves for the Future 
Mekong Dialogues
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