Leaving No One Behind

Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG 6) on water to “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all” highlights the overarching principle of “Leaving No One Behind”. In committing to the realisation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Member States recognised that the dignity of the individual is fundamental, and that the Agenda’s Goals and targets should be met for all nations and people and for all segments of society. Furthermore, they endeavor to reach first those who are furthest behind. This 1st World Water Summit on Leaving No One Behind aims to fill a need that is not yet met by other water conferences and provides a kick-off event as part of the 2019 UN-Water campaign on this theme. It differentiates itself from other water conferences by the focus on human rights to water and sanitation, and the focus on finding and implementing workable solutions with support from sponsors. The event is envisaged to be held annually for the next 11 years, for the duration of the SDG Agenda, and form part of the wider campaign to achieve SDG 6. The outcomes from these events will be interlinked with other global water events, such as the High-Level Panel on Water (HLPW), the World Water Forum (WWF) and World Water Week (WWW), and form part of the UN-Water annual campaigns.

Solutions for access to water and sanitation for the people that have been left behind is an issue of human rights, whatever the cause, be it poverty, water scarcity, climate change, conflict situations or cultural and gender barriers. Solutions need to be innovative, economical and easy to implement. Overarching these constraints there also needs to be a supportive political climate and strengthened governance to overcome corruption, inertia, and budgetary constraints.The nexus of these three aspects of Human Rights-Based Water Governance, Innovative Technology and Economic Feasibility provides a topic for this Summit, and a platform to bring together ideas and people in a constructive environment. The clear outcome from the two days is to find tangible projects to pilot, with funding attached to them.