Knowing water better: towards fairer and more sustainable access to natural resources - KnoWat

Capacity development: Supplementary capacity building on water accounting and auditing in Sri Lanka


The first of a series of capacity development workshops on Water Accounting and Auditing (WA&A) was conducted by the Department of Irrigation in Sri Lanka through the KnoWat project for technical experts and key stakeholders in the water sector. WA&A is a vital component of planning procedures for water resource management.

The capacity development workshop included theoretical and practical sessions conducted by resource persons from FAO Headquarters, FAO Near East and North Africa, International Water Management Institute and the IHE Delft Institute for Water Education. Sessions covered a wide range of focus areas such as water accounting in use-water saving and efficiency in irrigation, introducing rapid water accounting, water accounting and water productivity to support irrigation investments and institutionalizing water accounting, thereby providing a holistic understanding on efficient water resources management. Best practices, case studies and water accounts models and tools used in other countries including Australia, Armenia, Egypt, Jordan and Iran were studied in-depth at the training workshop.

The three day residential training workshop on WA&A was conducted at the Irrigation Training Institute (ITI) in Galgamuwa, Kurunegala. The training workshop saw the participation of 30 experts from the Department of Irrigation, Mahaweli Authority, Department of Agrarian Development, Water and Drainage Board, Water Resources Board, Department of Agriculture, Department of Meteorology, National Aquaculture Development Authority (NAQDA), Land Use Policy Planning Department, Central Environment Authority, Biodiversity Secretariat and the Department of Census and Statistics.

“Water Accounting and Auditing, which are rarely done, should be the starting point of any effective strategy for addressing water shortages and scarcity,” said Dr D.B.T Wijeratne, Assistant FAO Representative (Programme). “Through the KnoWat Project, FAO is supporting three member states, namely Sri Lanka, Senegal and Rwanda to improve water governance processes. This is done by building capacity in water accounting, and developing and testing a methodology for the assessment of water tenure.  Transparent water accounting and auditing can provide the basis for more realistic, sustainable, effective and equitable water management,” Dr Wijeratne stated further.

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