Why Freshwater Under-pins all Sustainable Development Goals

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On 1st January 2016, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development — adopted by world leaders in September 2015 at a UN Summit — officially came into force. The Sustainable Development Goals are an interrelated set of Goals, Indicators and Targets that UN member states are expected to use, to frame their agendas and political policies over the next 15 years. These Goals follow on from the Millennium Development Goals, which were agreed by governments in 2001 and expired at the end of 2015.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]It is only in safeguarding the global water cycle and so having adequate quantities of freshwater, that any of these Goals can be realistically achieved.[/mk_fancy_title]
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Considering that the stated aim of these Goals is to bring an end to all forms of poverty, whilst leaving no one behind, it is important that they are established upon common universal foundations. It is clear that they can only be achieved if there is long-term environmental sustainability and this is only possible if the global water cycle continues to function effectively. Therefore in order for there to be any lasting benefit gained from all the work that has gone towards sustainable development since 1992, safeguarding the global water cycle needs to given top priority. One of the significant Targets within the 2015 SDG’s is Target 6.6. This states:

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes”  

Download: UN, Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/un_the_2030_agenda_for_sustainable_development.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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We have created a document, which provides a potential framework for implementing this wide range of Sustainable Development Goals and Targets. It explains the clear link between the availability of fresh water and how it underpins the potential for achieving each Goal. It outlines the interconnectivity between the Goals and aims to make the task of achieving them more viable. View Full Paper by clicking on the image below:

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On March 22, 2012, the US National Intelligence Council released the unclassified report, ‘The Intelligence Community Assessment on Global Water Security’. Findings in the report reinforce the view that water is not just a human health issue, not just an economic development or environmental issue, but a peace and security issue and is central to National and International security.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]The essential and central role of ecosystems in achieving water security has been emphasised on numerous occasions and needs to be acted upon[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Ensuring that ecosystems are protected and conserved is central to achieving water security – both for people and for nature. Ecosystems are vital to sustaining the quantity and quality of water available within a watershed, on which both nature and people rely.”   

Download: A UN Analytical Brief 2013.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.unwater.org/downloads/analytical_brief_oct2013_web.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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Recognising that achieving fresh water security is central to national and international security, it should therefore be included as a crucial element within any long-term global defense strategies. This needs to include protecting and restoring the ecosystems, which are essential for rebalancing and maintaining the entire global water cycle.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Therefore at least 1% of the annual defence budget of all countries, within the U.N, should be allocated for achieving water security.[/mk_fancy_title]
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In 2016 we created a Report that further elaborates upon this subject and which provides a method/plan of action for implementing Target 6.6. This has been accepted as a model for climate adaptation by the UNFCCC and can be found on their website. We hope that you find this Document informative and that you Share it.

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[mk_button url=”http://www.activeremedy.org/news-posts/recent-document-submitted-to-the-unfccc-outlining-the-sggc-method/” target=”_blank” bg_color=”#334d5c”]View Report[/mk_button]
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How Important is the Global Water Cycle for Climate?

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Although we hear about it almost daily, how many of us really understand the nature of climate and how it functions?[/mk_fancy_title]
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Because it effects us all and the choices that we make effect it, then we all need to have a far greater understanding of what regulates climate and how it relates to our day-to-day lives. This would be much more productive than trying to adapt to the increasingly extreme weather conditions or waiting for governments to eventually make decisions that consider the long-term good of the many. An important point that is often missed out of climate change discussions is the fact that the water cycle and climate cycle are not two separate systems.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The water cycle plays a key role in the maintenance of the climate system as a moderator of the Earth’s energy cycle. It is through the water cycle that incoming solar energy is redistributed through the Earth system via the atmosphere and oceans.”

Download: USGCRP, Draft White Paper, Chapter 7, ‘The Global Water Cycle and its Role in Climate and Global Change’, 2002.Pdf[/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]This may seem simple but unless climate and the water cycle are put in their right context side by side, efforts to address either water or climate problems will be seriously undermined.[/mk_fancy_title]
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The global water cycle and climate change need to be addressed together, recognising that anything that impacts upon the water cycle, also impacts upon climate and vice versa. For example – mass deforestation sets off a chain of reactions that destabilise the water cycle, which then have knock on effects upon climate systems. These effects can range from cyclones and hurricanes, to flooding and drought. Generally these alarming repercussions are looked at in isolation but it is only really by looking at the entire water cycle and climate system collectively that cohesive solutions can be applied.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]”While attention thus far has focused on the impact of climate changes on the water cycle, the altered paradigm recommends concentrating attention on the impact of changes in the water cycle on climate changes.”   Download: M. Kravcík et al. Water for the Recovery of the Climate – A New Water Paradigm, 2007.pdf   [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Water_for_the_Recovery_of_the_Climate_A_New_Water_Paradigm.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]
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Up until recently the concept of climate included the global water cycle in its three phases of liquid, solid and gas. It was clearly understood that it was changes in this cycle, which were altering climate and the US Global Change Research Program, involving NASA was initiated in the 1990’s to gain greater understanding of the processes involved. In September 1999, as an essential element of this multi billion-dollar program, a water cycle study was initiated. This was with the aim of determining whether human induced changes were affecting the intensification of the water cycle and how this affected climate. One of their conclusions was that changes in land cover and land use can have significant, even drastic, impacts on the water cycle at local and regional scales. Seeing that massive deforestation programs have been happening globally, these impacts are also at international scales.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The hydrological cycle is the life-blood of many of the organisms that inhabit the Earth. At the same time it is, in many ways, the engine of the climate system. Human activities are now influencing the cycle at the global scale.” 

Download: W. Steffen et al. , ‘Global Change and the Earth System A Planet Under Pressure’, 2004.Pdf[/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]More attention needs to be given to the significant effects that water vapour greenhouse gas has in the atmosphere.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Water vapour in the atmosphere acts as a powerful greenhouse gas and nearly doubles the effects of greenhouse warming caused by carbon dioxide, methane and all similar gases.” Download: Moustaffa T Chahine, ‘The hydrological cycle and its influence on climate’, 1992.pdf

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Increased quantities of greenhouse gases in the upper atmosphere are widely recognised to be a major cause of the amplification of climate change. However water vapour is not often mentioned. This seems to be a great oversight because water vapour is the most abundant greenhouse gas in the atmosphere. According to studies it accounts for approximately 60% of the greenhouse effect. Whereas Carbon Dioxide accounts for approximately 26%. Therefore as the global water cycle becomes destabilised and there are larger quantities of water vapour in the atmosphere, it has a direct feedback effect on climate.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“For many, the term ‘climate’ refers to long-term weather statistics. However, more broadly and more accurately, the definition of climate is a system consisting of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, and biosphere. Physical, chemical and biological processes are involved in interactions among the components of the climate system. Vegetation, soil moisture, and glaciers, for example, are as much a part of the climate system as are temperature and precipitation.”   Download: Pielke. R. Sr, A broader view of the role of humans in the climate system, 2008.pdf   [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Pielke_A_Broader_view_of_the_human_role_in_the_Earth_System_2008.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]
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Because of the complex interconnectivity between the water cycle, climate, ecosystems and other Earth systems, we cannot look at something like climate change in isolation from the various environmental elements, which regulate climate. There is a sound, scientific basis for the need to preserve essential life supporting ecosystems. This subject was discussed in the Talanoa Dialogue and on the 12th December 2018 The Presidency of the COP 24 to the UNFCCC and COP 23 Presidency issued the Talanoa Call to Action, which calls for the urgent and rapid mobilization of all stakeholders to step up their efforts to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]A world of clean air, climate-resilient food production; healthy lands, forests and oceans; an end to ecosystem degradation; and, sustainable lifestyles worldwide.” View Full: UNFCCC, ‘Call for Action’, Talanoa Dialogue, 2018.Pdf

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The climate system is a complex, interactive system consisting of the atmosphere, land surface, snow and ice, oceans and other bodies of water, and living things.”   Download: IPPC. Historical Overview of Climate Change Science, 2001.pdf   [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IPPC_Historical_Overview-of_Climate_Change_Science_2001.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]
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For too long now the essential connectivity between the global hydrological cycle, climate and human induced climate change has been sidelined in international climate talks and water conferences. Instead the idea put forwards at the International Conference on Water and the Environment held in Dublin in 1992, where it was stated that: “Water has an economic value in all its competing uses and should be recognized as an economic good.”, became the favoured approach.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Trophic cascades give a clear and simple example of the connectivity that exists between biodiversity, ecosystems and Earth systems.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]However reducing the status of water to that of an economic good does not serve the fundamental needs of the majority of humanity nor the other living species on Earth.[/mk_fancy_title]
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Although water is the foundations and bedrock upon which all economies rest, viewing water in this way has allowed it to fall into the category of ‘valuable, limited commodity. This is bringing about the mass privatization of freshwater. It is now being treated as a marketable good that can be sold at any price, water companies wish to place upon it. In the meantime safeguarding the global water cycle and implementing effective solutions, which include preserving the ecosystems, which maintain it and dealing with rebalancing the quantities of atmospheric water vapour greenhouse gas, are being ignored.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The construction of dams on major rivers worldwide has affected flow regimes, and with them C and N fluxes and ecosystem dynamics. Changes in erosion and sedimentation alter channel and floodplain morphology, with important feedbacks to water, carbon, and nitrogen cycles. Further, sediment from erosion can have long-lasting influence on river hydrology (e.g., Meade 1982) Land use changes affect hydrological processes and these interact with carbon and nutrients in many significant ways.”  View Full: National Science Foundation ‘A Plan for a New Science Initiative on the Global Water Cycle’, chapter 4, 2003[/mk_blockquote]
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Because freshwater, as we know it, only exists as part of a three phase recycling process known as the hydrological cycle, then any group claiming ownership of it, should also be obliged to bear the responsibility of all it’s three phases. They would therefore be accountable for all damages brought about by its instability. This includes extreme weather events related to the intensification of the water cycle and the severe reduction in quantity of freshwater worldwide, linked with aquifer depletion and glacial melt.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The hydrological cycle influences climate in a variety of ways. The exchanges of moisture and heat between the atmosphere and the Earth’s surface fundamentally affect the dynamics and thermodynamics of the climate system. In the forms of vapour, clouds, liquid, snow and ice, as well as during phase transitions, water plays opposing roles in heating and cooling the environment. Fifty per cent of surface cooling results from evaporation.” Download: Moustaffa T Chahine, ‘The hydrological cycle and its influence on climate’, 1992.pdf

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Water privatisation is not a viable option when considering all the implications. It only distracts attention and resources away from re-stabilising the global water cycle.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“There is a well-established pattern of suppression and distortion of scientific findings by high-ranking Bush administration political appointees across numerous federal agencies. These actions have consequences for human health, public safety, and community well-being.” View Full: Union of Concerned Scientists, Scientific Integrity in Policy Making, 2004.Pdf

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If we truly wish to leave our children, grandchildren and future generations a world in which they can live in some kind of peace and harmony, which accords in any way whatsoever with the ideas of sustainability and human rights, then addressing human induced climate change needs to include the rebalancing of the hydrological cycle.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The restricted definition of ‘‘climate change’’ used by the Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC) has profoundly affected the science, politics, and policy processes associated with the international response to the climate issue. Specifically, the FCCC definition has contributed to the gridlock and ineffectiveness of the global response to the challenge of climate change. This paper argues that the consequences of misdefining ‘‘climate change’’ create a bias against adaptation policies and set the stage for the politicization of climate science.”

Download: Roger A. Pielke Jr. ‘Misdefining ‘‘climate change’’: consequences for science and action’, 2005. Pdf[/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The water cycle is now widely recognized as one of the dominant causes of uncertainty in climate change projections. Moreover, most major impacts of climate variability and climate change on human activity and natural ecosystems directly involve precipitation processes or water and energy cycles.”

Download: Draft White Paper: The Global Water Cycle and its Role in Climate and Global Change, Strategic Plan for the Climate Change Science Program, November 2002. Pdf  [/mk_blockquote]

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Mountain Ecosystems Impact upon the Water Cycle

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Quantities of fresh water and global water security are critical issues. Yet most people do not realise the vital link between these and healthy mountain ecosystems.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The magnitude of the global freshwater crisis and the risks associated with it, have been greatly underestimated. One billion people on earth are without reliable supplies of water and more than 2 billion people lack basic sanitation.”   Download: U.N Water Security.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Global-Water-Crisis.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]
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Mountain ecosystems are amongst those crucial ecosystems, which are necessary for the healthy functioning of the hydrological cycle. They play a key role in maintaining freshwater quantity and quality worldwide.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Given their important role in water supply and regulation, the protection, sustainable management and restoration of mountain ecosystems will be essential.”  

Download: UNESCO, 2013,Climate Change impacts on Mountain Regions of the World.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/unesco-2013-climate-change-impacts-on-mountain-regions-of-the-world.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]It is the intensification of the global water cycle, which is bringing about major instability in global climate systems.[/mk_fancy_title]
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The world’s mountain regions source between 60% and 80% of the Earths freshwater. Many streams and rivers would cease to flow entirely if their headwaters and watersheds were not fed by the seasonal melting of these snows. Such valuable storage of freshwater is vital for all life on Earth. However mountain ecosystems have suffered widespread degradation on a global scale. This seriously compromises and threatens the hydrological cycle.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Maintaining the integrity of ecosystems before they become compromised is an essential component of achieving water security and reducing the potential for conflicts. The continuous pace of human development is threatening the capacity of ecosystems to adapt, raising concerns that ecosystems will reach a tipping point after which they are no longer able to provide sustaining functions and services, and will become unable to recover their integrity and functions.”  

Download: U.N Analytical Brief, 22/3/2013.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/un_analytical_brief_2013-3.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]An ecosystem approach is essential for resolving climatic instability and for securing a long-term, freshwater supply, for all living beings[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Mountain environments are extremely important to the world’s water resources, weather systems and populations.”   

Download: Mountain Hydroclimatology,De Jong et al, 2009.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/c_de_jong_et_al_2009_mountain_hydroclimatology.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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It is estimated that one in two people worldwide depend on freshwater mountain sources. Whatever happens in upland watersheds has a massive impact on the water supply of downstream areas and the destruction and disturbances of mountain ecosystems have wide-reaching global consequences.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The degradation of mountain ecosystems – home to 600 million people and the source of water for more than half the world’s population – threatens to seriously worsen global environmental problems including floods, landslides and famine,”  

View: UNU, contribution to the Agenda 21, Chapter 13: Managing Fragile Ecosystems: Sustainable Mountain Development,1992.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://archive.unu.edu/env/mountains/findings.html”][/mk_blockquote]

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Mountains are often called nature’s water towers. All of Earth’s rivers have their headwaters and origins in them. They intercept air circulating around the globe and force it upwards where it condenses into clouds, which provide rain and snow. They also store water in various ways, including the formation of snow and ice, which is later released as melt-off during warm seasons.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“More than half of the accessible fresh water is used directly or indirectly by humankind and much of this precious resource has its origins in mountainous regions”   

Download: Schär C. and Frei C, Orographic precipitation and climate change, 2005.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Orographic_precipitation_and_climate_change.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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Another essential source of fresh water is glaciers and mountain snow. During winter months snow accumulates in the mountains. It slowly melts over the summer, generating fresh water for streams and rivers and the needs of humans, plants and animals. Nowadays mountain snows and glaciers are melting and receding at an unprecedented rate.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Scientist are alarmed by the rapid retreat of mountain glaciers worldwide.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“For people living in the lowlands below, the storage of winter precipitation as snow or ice is especially crucial, because this melts when temperatures rise in the spring and summer. The water that is released enters the rivers, flowing downstream exactly at the time when it is most needed in the lowlands, sometimes thousands of kilometres away, for irrigation and other uses.”  

Download: UNU, Key Issues for Mountain Areas, 2004.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/UNU_Key_Issues_for_Mountain_People.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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As has been noted by many scientists, these glaciers are not only a major source of fresh water for more than half of humanity; they are also a fundamental part of the planet’s climate cycles. Either positively or negatively they effect weather patterns on a global scale. Therefore they effect us all.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The importance of seasonally and permanently frozen land surfaces extends far beyond surface hydrologic processes, however. These areas also interact significantly with the global weather and climate system, the geosphere, and the biosphere.” (USGCRP. A plan for a new science initiative on the global water cycle, chapter 2, 2001)[/mk_blockquote]
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We all generally understand the temporary crisis we would experience, if the water tanks in our homes were not operational. In this case however, we are talking about the water towers of Earth and the potential global crisis that would occur if they should cease to function. Therefore it is of paramount importance that these irreplaceable ecosystems are given immediate attention and that all is done to protect and restore their mixed biodiversity. We cannot afford to loose this biodiversity because it plays a vital role in precipitation and the creation of snows at high altitudes.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Earth’s mountain regions with their mixed biodiversity are an essential and vital part of the global water cycle.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Seasonal snow cover and glaciers store large amounts of freshwater and are therefore critical components of the land surface hydrologic cycle.” (USGCRP. A plan for a new science initiative on the global water cycle, chapter 2, 2001)[/mk_blockquote]
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Problems related to their degradation are not simply problems for those living in mountain regions. All of life on Earth is affected. Through deforestation, dam building and the mass burning of fossil fuels, humanity has inadvertently brought about these problems Therefore it is the responsibility of the international community to do everything possible to fix them. If we do not take concerted unified co-operative action now it will only get far worst.

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]The Himalayas, also known as the Third Pole, are important in regulating the climate of the whole Northern Hemisphere.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Mountain ecosystems such as mountain forests, cloud forests, wetlands and grasslands play vital roles in water storage and supply”  

Download: Climate Change impacts on Mountain Regions of the World, 2013.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/unesco-2013-climate-change-impacts-on-mountain-regions-of-the-world.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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On 1st January 2016, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development — adopted by world leaders in September 2015 at a UN Summit — officially came into force. The Sustainable Development Goals are an interrelated set of Goals, Indicators and Targets that UN member states are expected to use, to frame their agendas and political policies over the next 15 years. Target 6.6 sets a mandate for world governments to protect and restore water related ecosystems, as they are essential for realising access to fresh water for all.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes”  

Download: UN, Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/un_the_2030_agenda_for_sustainable_development.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]This has been known about for decades. Now governments need to honour their obligations and actually deal with mountain ecosystem degradation[/mk_fancy_title]
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Mountain ecosystems are a major part of the Earths’ cooling system and the global water cycle, making them intrinsic to climate and weather throughout the world. This affects all life on Earth, beyond country, location and even social boundaries. There is a direct correlation between the melting glaciers in these regions and the melting claviers of Greenland and the Polar regions. It is all interconnected.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Water is at the heart of both the causes and the effects of climate change (NRC, 1998)” (USGCRP. A plan for a new science initiative on the global water cycle, chapter 1, 2001)[/mk_blockquote]
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Fresh water security has already been recognised as central to global security and the ecosystems which regulate this has been recognised as central to water security. Therefore this needs to be included as a crucial element within all global defence strategies.

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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“The importance of seasonally and permanently frozen land surfaces extends far beyond surface hydrologic processes, however. These areas also interact significantly with the global weather and climate system, the geosphere, and the biosphere. Whether surface water is liquid or frozen has important consequences for surface albedo and net radiation, as well as for latent energy exchanges.” (View Full: MFS, ‘The Global Water Cycle’, 2001)[/mk_blockquote]
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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ font_weight=”inhert” margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]Because it is an issue of both National and International security, at least 1% of the annual defence budget of all countries within the U.N, should be allocated for dealing with this.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_blockquote font_family=”none” align=”left”]“Ensuring that ecosystems are protected and conserved is central to achieving water security – both for people and for nature. Ecosystems are vital to sustaining the quantity and quality of water available within a watershed, on which both nature and people rely. Maintaining the integrity of ecosystems is essential for supporting the diverse needs of humans, and for the sustainability of ecosystems, including protecting the water- provisioning services they provide.”   

Download: U.N Analytical Brief, 2013.pdf  [mk_font_icons icon=”moon-file-pdf” size=”small” padding_horizental=”4″ padding_vertical=”4″ circle=”false” align=”none” link=”http://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/un_analytical_brief_2013.pdf”][/mk_blockquote]

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[mk_fancy_title color=”#393836″ size=”24″ margin_bottom=”18″ font_family=”none”]It is not a case of not being able to afford to deal with this. We cannot afford not to.[/mk_fancy_title]
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[mk_image src=”https://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/approaching_the_2030_agenda_from_a_hydrological_cycle_based_perspective_looking_beyond_the-goals-image-1.jpg” link=”https://www.activeremedy.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/a.r-input-for-global-sustainable-development-report-2019.pdf” target=”_blank” title=”Read Full Report” crop=”false”]
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