Public information and
education is a critical water conservation priority. A
multi-stakeholder and participatory approach involving water
users and service providers, governmental agencies and
non-governmental organizations needs to be encouraged.
Raising awareness of water issues at all levels is deemed
critical in the successful implementation of water
conservation programmes and activities.
It is anticipated that
water conservation activities, such as water loss reduction
programmes and public awareness campaigns for rational water
use could result in significant water savings. The saved
water could then be made available to the under previlidged
people who lack sustainable access to water supply services,
while new and expensive projects for developing additional
water supply sources could be cancelled or postponed for at
least several years.
To sensitize and generate
a greater degree of awareness to the strategic importance of
water conservation in ESCAP member countries a
guidebook on the promotion of public awareness of water
conservation is being prepared. It is a collaborative
effort involving ESCAP and the experts from several
countries of the region under a project funded by the
Government of Japan.
The outline of the
guidebook was discussed and agreed upon at a seminar held on
23-25 May 2000, while at the other seminar, held on 9-10
November 2000, a draft of the guidebook was discussed and
amended by participants. The guidebook is planned to be
published in May 2001.