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Monitoring water related SDG indicators

Thirty-two countries participate in training workshops to increase monitoring capacities towards achieving sustainable water use

A series of three technical workshops on monitoring SDG Target 6.4 on sustainable water were held in June and July in three venues in Guatemala, Morocco and FAO headquarters. The workshops gathered 62 participants from 32 countries, representing water-related institutions as well as national statistical offices. The workshops were organized as a part of FAO’s efforts to support Members in achieving and monitoring SDG targets related to food and agriculture. The workshops have been supported jointly by the Regular Programme of FAO and the Integrated Monitoring Initiative.

The workshops had several objectives: describe the methodologies for computing the indicators of SDG Target 6.4 and discuss their implementation in participant countries; discuss the institutional arrangements needed in the different countries for the implementation of the SDG monitoring system; define the next steps needed in order to have data from the countries according to the SDG process timeframe; identify possibilities for regional cooperation for the monitoring system, taking into account the transboundary water resources management and identify needs and opportunities for further support from FAO to the participant countries, including establishing synergies with existing projects and programs; as well as identifying new possibilities at regional and national level.

In the context of the 2030 Agenda, FAO works with countries to ensure that water use in agriculture is more efficient, productive, equitable and environmentally-friendly. This involves producing more food while using less water, building resilience of farming communities to cope with floods and droughts, and applying clean water technologies that protect the environment.

The project, Integrated Monitoring Initiative - GEMI is framed in the SDG process. It is carried out by FAO along with seven other UN agencies coordinated by UN-Water. The main objective of the project is the development of a methodology and a baseline process for the monitoring of indicators related to SDG 6 targets—Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.

The FAO Land and Water Division, through AQUASTAT, leads the work related to Target 6.4, which is, "By 2030, substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity." 

In the next few months, as data will be produced by the countries, FAO will continue assisting through distance support tools while a global workshop is being planned for later this year with the GEMI project partners.