Resilient Cities Network launches water resilience program ahead of UN Water Conference

10 Mar 2023 by The Water Diplomat

Water resilience is becoming an increasingly important topic for urban centers around the world. With climate change exacerbating water-related challenges such as floods, droughts, and water scarcity, cities are looking for ways to build more resilient water systems. In response to this growing need, the
Resilient Cities Network has launched a water resilience program ahead of the UN 2023 Water Conference be held on March 22-24, in New York City.

"The challenges associated with water are becoming more severe, and the demand for water is increasing. Cities need to invest in resilient water systems to cope with these challenges and ensure a sustainable water supply for all", said the Resilient Cities Network in a statement.

"The UN Water Conference is a critical opportunity for cities to come together and discuss the challenges and opportunities associated with water. By working together, cities can develop more resilient and sustainable water systems that can adapt to the challenges of the future", the statement
further reads.

To reiterate the importance of water resilience, the Resilient Cities Network has highlighted several practical cases, including the City of Cape Town, which faced a severe water crisis in 2018 due to prolonged drought. Another example is The Hague, a coastal city that is particularly vulnerable to the
impacts of climate change, such as sea-level rise and extreme weather events.

“We have taken various steps to enhance our water resilience, including building flood protection measures and investing in sustainable water management solutions,” said Robert van Asten, The Hague’s Deputy Mayor for Mobility, Infrastructure, and Water. He emphasized the importance of
collaboration between cities and the need to learn from each other to build more resilient water systems.

The launch of the water resilience program comes ahead of the UN Water Conference, which will bring together stakeholders from around the world to discuss water-related challenges and opportunities. The conference will focus on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals related to water, including ensuring access to safe and affordable water for all and improving water quality and efficiency. 

"The goal of our water resilience program is to support cities in developing a holistic approach to water management that considers social, economic, and environmental dimensions of water", said Lauren Sorkin, Executive Director of the Resilient Cities Network. "By sharing knowledge and experience, we
hope to build a network of water-resilient urban centres that can adapt to the challenges of the future".