According to United Nations report, cooperation will be needed to achieve sustainability goals
This year’s United Nations World Water Development Report focuses on partnerships and cooperation in the quest to reach water goals and targets.
Various entities play a role in ensuring that communities have access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation. These include governmental departments and agencies, nongovernmental organizations, the private sector, and the communities themselves.
Many factors can hamper the provision of services, including pollution, environmental degradation of freshwater systems, and climate change impacts, as well as a lack of infrastructure and funding.
Due to the immense challenges associated with providing water and sanitation in both urban and rural areas, few institutions, organizations, or countries can overcome the growing demand for these services on their own. Therefore, if we hope to attain the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goal No. 6, that is, ensuring clean water and sanitation for all by 2030, partnerships and cooperation will be imperative.
Partnerships and Their Benefits
The U.N. report defines partnerships as relationships formed by two or more parties, whereby all involved work together towards a common goal or purpose or to undertake a specific project, with the risks and responsibilities, as well as resources and benefits, shared as per mutual agreement. Water cooperation, on the other hand, is a less formal arrangement where two or more stakeholders work together towards a common goal of peacefully managing and utilizing water resources at local, national, regional, and international levels.
There are three main types of partnerships:
- Intra-sectoral partnerships and cooperation, where stakeholders within a sector work together toward a common water-related objective.
- Cross-sectoral partnerships and cooperation, where entities with different water-related focus areas and objectives work together toward a common objective.
- Extra-sectoral partnerships and cooperation, where stakeholders from outside the water sector, whose primary focus may not center around water but who have a vested interest in water, work together with partners in the water domain to achieve a common objective.
Effective partnerships and cooperation can help fast-track the rollout of water and sanitation services according to the needs and resources of poorer communities. But in order to meet their desired objectives and increase public acceptance and ownership of these systems, it is important to achieve stakeholder engagement before the services are provided. Active stakeholder participation allows all parties to gain a clearer understanding of issues, and helps develop a shared vision of what solutions can be implemented to address them.
When it comes to access to safe drinking water, rural communities around the world lag behind their urban counterparts, with only 60% of rural communities having it as opposed to 86% of urban areas. Obstacles include remote location, as well as a lack of infrastructure and financial resources.
One creative solution to this challenge is to form a partnership with a professional water and wastewater treatment company. For example, Seven Seas Water Group’s Water-as-a-Service® offers an innovative solution for overcoming the challenges faced by both rural and urban areas.
Seven Seas partners with clients to provide appropriate treatment solutions without the need for upfront capital investment. Seven Seas offers a wide range of water and wastewater treatment technologies, and will design and build the infrastructure you need or upgrade an existing plant according to your requirements and budget. Once the system is completed, Seven Seas will take responsibility for operating and maintaining the plant on your behalf. You only pay for the water the system delivers.
Seven Seas specializes in the use of decentralized water and sanitation systems, which eliminate the need for long pipe runs to central plants, thereby removing a stumbling block to water and sanitation services in rural areas.
Contact Seven Seas to learn more about our Water-as-a-Service® partnerships and how we can help you overcome the challenges associated with providing rural or under-resourced communities with access to clean water and sanitation services.
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