Water Forum Agreement
The Water Forum is implementing projects to protect the U.S. Low River and the region`s water supply. The 9th edition of the World Water Forum aims to bring together policy makers and water stakeholders from around the world to promote more common action for Africa and other regions and to promote strong cooperation within the continent and the rest of the world to accelerate progress towards global goals. Marginal benefits and business as usual will not be enough to cope with rapid urbanization, withstand climate change and disasters, or provide adequate sanitation. In order to fully comply with the above principles, states are required to conduct environmental impact assessments and invest in groundwater management and monitoring. The agreement thus reaffirms the two fundamental principles of international water law (i.e. fair and reasonable use and the obligation not to harm). Pilar Carolina Villar is a doctoral student in the Environmental Sciences Graduate Program (PROCAM) at the University of Sao Paulo. Wagner Costa Ribeiro is Professor of Geography at the University of Sao Paulo.
This article adapts the material of Villar, P.C. and W.C. Ribeiro (2011), „The Agreement on the Guarani Aquifer: a new paradigm for grenz-berschreititboundary groundwater management? Water International, 36 (5): 646-660, 2011, available at www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02508060.2011.603671. In February 2006, forum participants conducted a five-year review of the network`s efforts, a regular evaluation they impose as part of the agreement. Based on a stakeholder survey, the analysis showed that the alliance of these actors enabled the protection of the environment and the sustainable development of the Guarani Aquifer System Project (aka Guarani Aquifer System Project). This project was South America`s most ambitious groundwater initiative. The six-year project (2003-2009) raised awareness of the characteristics of the GAZe and sparked a debate on groundwater management in the four countries at the national, provincial and municipal levels. The staff is responsible for coordination, but has taken on more tasks as more forum projects have been implemented. Interviewees agreed that the most controversial debates had taken place, but there was still a lot of negotiation and staff were more involved in this process.
Members are still negotiating with each other, but over the years staff have gained more power and mandate to carry out the work of implementing decisions. In parallel with the implementation of this project, Mercosur, Mercosur, has put the Guarani Aquifer on the agenda. In 2004, a high-level ad hoc group was established to develop an agreement on the common management of aquifers between the parties.15 The MERCOSUR Parliament also proposed: (i) the creation of a commission to study, analyse and compare legislation on each country`s water resources; (ii) an agreement on the joint management of the GAZ and a transitional project ensuring the continuity of the gas project structure; and (iii) the creation of a regional research and development institute for Guarani Aquif and other state-divided aquifers17.