Global Policy


IUCN's SDG brochure image - SDG6

Nature provides the infrastructure needed to supply clean water for human use in daily subsistence, agriculture and energy generation. At the same time, secure water supplies are needed to maintain healthy water-related ecosystems. Pollution, deforestation and climate change are having devastating impacts on these ecosystems. This leads to water scarcity, which may contribute to conflicts within and between countries. 

IUCN protects and restores ecosystems and ensures effective management of water resources to secure clean water for its myriad of uses by society.


  • provides scientific evidence of the value of wetlands, floodplains and other water-related ecosystems for power generation, agriculture and other uses, to encourage investment in their conservation;
  • provides data and analysis of aquatic ecosystems and guidelines on the conservation and sustainable use of river basins to governments and local communities;
  • provides legal and policy advice on the inclusive and efficient allocation, management and conservation of water resources to governments and local communities;
  • provides technical guidance on effective water management to governments and local communities in transboundary areas;
  • advises the private sector on ways to improve the management of water resources across business supply chains and products.
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