09 Sep Fourth Karachi International Water Conference Closed on a positive note
Day two of the two-day Fourth Karachi International Water Conference aiming to bring together thought leaders, actors and players of the water sector that are working on Water-Energy-Food Nexus concluded successfully. Major global, regional and national organizations and their representatives, researchers, professionals, decision-makers, business innovators, practitioners, experts, women’s groups, youth groups and leaders on WEF Nexus exchanged ideas on fostering new thinking, developing innovative solutions and work on the water agenda for the 21st century.
Day 2, began with Session 5 ‘Fireside Chat on Valuing Water’, with free-flowing conversation with three defenders of water, Dr. Adil Najam, Ms. Ayesha Khan and Ms. Naida Naqi. – the discussion explored the intrinsic value of water in protecting our ecosystems. Session 6A ‘Water Governance and Security – Food Production and Agriculture Development’ explored food security solutions for Pakistan and the panelists shared global and regional good practices that can be adopted locally. Moving towards Session 6B ‘Nexus Approaches for Water Policy and Strategy’ assessed whether the much needed WEF Nexus is reflected in our policy discourse. Session 7A ‘Water Infrastructure and Investment – A Bespoke Model for Water Financing’ chaired by Dr. Reza Baqir, Governor State Bank identified water financing instruments and financing models for water, especially for Pakistan in the 21st century. Session 7B ‘Leaving No One Behind – Young People Calling for Climate Change Emergency’ highlighted the efforts of youth in connection to the nexus and climate emergency. The conference closing session featured talks by Country Director World Bank, Ilangovan Pachamuthu and FAO representative to Pakistan Ms. Mina Dowlatchahi. Ms. Simi Kamal unveiled and gave an overview of the first of its kind Water Center being set up at NED University Karachi, The Panjwani-Hisaar Water Institute. Ms. Meher Noshirwani read the conference declaration wrapping up the intellectual discourse and discussion from two days. Towards the end, Governor Sindh, Mr Imran Ismail gave his remarks and lauded the efforts of Hisaar Foundation.
The centrality of water in the Water Energy Food Nexus as a tool for analysis and the paradigm for action is obvious. Delivering water, energy and food for all in a sustainable and equitable way is one of the major challenges faced by our societies. By the end of the conference emerged an agenda for research, policy and action on WEF nexus, pledges of government and people working together, and connection between developed and developing countries. The Water-Energy-Food nexus was explored through various lens of valuing water, water governance, water infrastructure and investment, and social inclusion (gender and youth).
The day ended successfully with the attendees hopeful that the water problems of the country could be addressed in a more positive and innovative way in the near future.