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World Water Day

22 March

World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. This Day is an opportunity to learn more about water related issues, be inspired to tell others and take action to make a difference. Water is an essential building block of life. It is more than just essential to quench thirst or protect health; water is vital for creating jobs and supporting economic, social, and human development. 

A new World Water Development Report is released each year on or near World Water Day, to provide decision-makers with tools to formulate and implement sustainable water policies. This report is coordinated by UNESCO’s World Water Development Programme (WWAP) on behalf of UN-Water. The annual theme for World Water Day is aligned with the focus of the report. 

Download the report

UNESCO also contributes to the observance of World Water Day within the activities of its Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP), which worlds all year long to build the scientific knowledge base to help countries manage their water resources in a sustainable way.

The United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/47/193 of 22 December 1992 by which 22 March of each year was declared World Day for Water, to be observed starting in 1993, in conformity with the recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) contained in Chapter 18 (Fresh Water Resources) of Agenda 21. States were invited to devote the Day, as appropriate in the national context, to concrete activities such as the promotion of public awareness through the publication and diffusion of documentaries and the organization of conferences, round tables, seminars and expositions related to the conservation and development of water resources.
 

MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL

“World Water Day is meant to be a call to action. Responsibility lies with all of us. Governments, associations, private partners: we must all recognize the multifold value of water and take action to conserve this basic resource, the resource which gives our planet its unique colour.”

— Audrey Azoulay, Director-General, on the occasion of World Water Day 2021

Download the complete message in PDF format
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Commemoration in 2021: Valuing water

The 2021 edition of the World Water Development Report (WWDR 2021) entitled ‘Valuing Water will be launched on World Water Day, 22 March 2020.

ater is a finite and non-substitutable resource. As the foundation of life, societies and economies, it carries multiple values and benefits. But unlike most other natural resources, it has proven extremely difficult to determine its true ‘value’.

The 2021 edition of the United Nations World Water Development Report, titled “Valuing Water” assesses the current status of and challenges to the valuation of water across different sectors and perspectives, and identifies ways in which valuation can be promoted as a tool to help improve its management and achieve global sustainable development.

 

Events in celebration of World Water Day

 

 

Past Commemorations