Water


Each day, one of every two people on the planet quenches his thirst with water that originates in mountains.
 And as the world population swells to an estimated 9.6 billion by 2050, the worldwide demand for freshwater will continue to soar.

Mountains provide between 60 and 80 percent of the world’s freshwater, essential for domestic consumption, irrigation, industry, food and energy production. The ten largest rivers originating in the Hindu Kush Himalayas alone supply water to over 1.35 billion people. Some of the world’s largest cities, including New York, Rio de Janeiro, Nairobi, Tokyo and Melbourne, are dependent on freshwater from mountains.

Climate change is already causing more than 600 glaciers to disappear, resulting in springs and rivers drying up. Greater frequency of extreme weather events, droughts and floods, including flash floods and glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs), are also expected to increase in mountains, causing imbalance between current water supply and demand.

Given the importance of mountain water resources worldwide, the careful management of mountain water resources is a global priority.  Water management practices need to be adapted to different climatic zones, using locally adapted soil and water management techniques. Most importantly, watershed management must take into account the needs of all those who depend on mountain water, including those who have the greatest stake in preserving healthy mountain ecosystems – people who live in mountain areas themselves, who are often marginalized from the decision-making processes. 

Caucasus Mountain Forum 2018

Caucasus Mountain Forum 2018

event

The second Caucasus Mountain Forum, organized by the Scientific Network for the Caucasus Region under the theme “The Caucasus Research Agenda – a Key to Sustainable Regional Development”, will be held from 30 October to 2 November 2018 in Ankara, Turkey. The 2018 Caucasus Mountain Forum theme encompasses the subject...

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World Mountain Forum 2018

World Mountain Forum 2018

event

Under the theme “Mountains in a changing world: strengthening partnership and pathways towards a thriving mountain future”, the fourth World Mountain Forum will be held on 23–26 October 2018, in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, hosted by the Government of Kyrgyzstan with support from the Government of Switzerland, the...

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Forum Carpaticum 2018

Forum Carpaticum 2018

event

The Forum Carpaticum is an open meeting of the Science for the Carpathians (S4C) initiative that occurs every two years. The fifth Forum Carpaticum will cover a wide range of topics related to sustainability in the Carpathians, including land cover and land-use change, renewable energy, climate change vulnerability assessment and...

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High-level International Conference on the International Decade for Action, “Water for Sustainable Development”, 2018-2028

High-level International Conference on the International Decade for Action, “Water for Sustainable Development”, 2018-2028

event

Lack of access to safe drinking water, basic sanitation and sound hygiene, along with water scarcity and water pollution constitute some of today’s biggest challenges for the international community, in particular for developing countries. Increasingly frequent water-related disasters, climate change, urbanization, population growth, desertification and drought combined with a lack...

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IPROMO 2018: Bioeconomy in mountain areas

IPROMO 2018: Bioeconomy in mountain areas

news

The bioeconomy of the world’s mountains will be under discussion at the 2018 International Programme on Research and Training on Sustainable Management of Mountain Areas (IPROMO) in Ormea and Pieve Tesino, Italy, from 18 June to 2 July. Some 37 technical officers and researchers from more than 20 countries will...

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Mountain Futures in China

Mountain Futures in China

news

Researchers and representatives from governments, mountain communities and private sector companies from across the globe meet at the four-day Mountain Futures 2018 conference to discuss inspiration and innovation from the world highlands.
The conference, organized by the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and Kunming Institute of Botany (KIB), Chinese Academy of...

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