Geneva, Switzerland, November 28-29, 2018
The World Water Quality Assessment (WWQA) is a project initiated by the UN-Water Thematic Priority Area on Water Quality, spearheaded by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Its aim is to describe water quality, identify sources of water pollution, point out impacts and specific options for action. To this end, a pre-study was conducted from 2013 to2015. In its course, a data and model-driven methodology was developed and tested, and current “hotspots” of deteriorating surface water quality were identified. This pre-study was coordinated by the German Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ, Leipzig) and implemented in cooperation with the University of Kassel (Center for Environmental Systems Research, CESR), GEMS/Water and several regional partners.
Aim of the kick-off event was to find relevant partners and supporters at the global level in preparation of a full study. Thus, UN Environment, with the support of WMO and UN Water, had issued an invitation to the headquarters of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The invitation met with much interest, attracting a high level of international participation. Present on the panel were, in addition to the main initiators UN Environment, UN Water and WMO, the ICWRGC as a contact for future operationalisation, and the UFZ as a contact for scientific development.
The event was largely held in the form of workshops. Its objective was to find out the interests, ideas and expectations of the participants regarding the organisation and any possible technical and financial support for WWQA for further action. Based on versatile expertise and views, a lively and intense exchange created a common vision of further procedures, which will now provide assistance and advice along the future path, in the form of a WWQA alliance.