4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week

08:37 AM | 10 Dec, 2021
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
4,000 participants, 20 nationalities, number of solutions to problems at Pakistan Water Week
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ISLAMABAD – Up to 4,000 delegates from 20 nationalities pledged at the concluding session of the Pakistan Water Week 2021 (PWW) in Islamabad on Thursday to fight the looming water crisis. 

The four-day event (December 6-9) hosted 30 water experts from 10 countries to discuss solutions directly related to Pakistan's water shortage, food security, and resilience to climate change.     

The conference, ‘Needs for sustainable water management in a climate crisis for the Indus Basin’ was organised by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) through the Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR), and CGIARs Water, Land and Ecosystems Programme.

The first event of its kind in Pakistan was graced by President Arif Alvi as Guest of Honour, while four federal ministers, one provincial minister with portfolios of climate change, food, science and technology, and irrigation, attended every water event held this year to become Pakistan's largest.

Over half of visitors were females

According to statistics released by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) Pakistan, females accounted for 51.9 per cent of PWW 2021 visitors. As for age groups, 51.5 per cent were aged between 22 and 35; 35.5 per cent, between 31 and 45; 11.1 per cent, 46 years and older; and 1.3 per cent were under 15.

Around 2,500 visitors walked into the 4-day event while 1,500 joined virtually. The water week received visitors from 20 nationalities, with Pakistan securing the top spot, followed by India, UAE, Sri Lanka, UK, Italy, Tashkent, MENA region, Philippines, USA, and EU countries.

The programming agenda of PWW 2021 included five thematic areas with 15 sessions, debate competitions among school, college, and university students, poster competition, students board games, essay competition, exhibitions, and water conservation awareness seminars & workshops for children.

A new beginning

Mark Smith, IWMI Director-General, said: “The challenge of water security in Pakistan and globally is fast becoming more urgent because of climate change. We cannot wait longer to begin to take the concerted action needed to safeguard our water resources for the future. We need to be guided by science, and to work through partnerships that bring together governments, communities, businesses, and scientists to turn knowledge into action”.  

The IWMI DG also stated: "The conclusion of the water week marks not the end but the beginning of a new journey for dominating scarcity issues in Pakistan and globally – one in which the distinct voices of water experts and scientists are heard and begin to resonate with the whole world. We look forward to seeing more and more water friends and activists contributing to the global water crisis."

Mohsin Hafeez, Country Representative IWMI Pakistan & Central Asia stated: "the strong participation by water and climate change professionals as well as the visitor turnout was both “evidence of the willingness not only to tackle water shortage issues in the country but also put our agriculture sector on the path of digital water management.”

“The strong foundations of activism laid down by PWW will stand firm in the face of any adversities, and enlightened minds can build on it to drive prosperity for all,” Mohsin added.