For years, land and environmental defenders have been the first line of defence against climate breakdown. Yet despite clearer evidence than ever of the crucial role they play, far too many businesses, financiers and governments fail to safeguard their vital and peaceful work.
As part of this year’s online World Water Week at Home, adelphi and IHE Delft convened the workshop "Water diplomacy: a tool for climate action?". The workshop reflected on the role that foreign policy can play in mitigating, solving and potentially preventing conflicts over the management of transboundary water resources, especially in a changing climate.
The longstanding dispute over water rights among Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia escalated in 2011 when Ethiopia began construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), in the absence of any agreement with downstream Egypt. The GERD dispute offers an alarming insight into just how dangerous future transboundary water disputes may become, particularly in the context of a changing climate.
World Water Week 2020 was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To help bridge the gap between the 2019 and 2021 World Water Weeks, the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) organised 'WWWeek At Home' between 24 and 28 August 2020.
In this SIWI World Water Week workshop organised by adelphi and IHE Delft, experts from the diplomacy, development, security, climate change and water communities discussed the conditions under which specific diplomatic tools can be used by riparian and non-riparian countries to shape regional cooperation to address climate, and other security and development challenges, such as migration.
Few places have suffered more from the COVID-19 pandemic than southern China, the region where the novel coronavirus was first detected in the city of Wuhan. But it turned out that the pandemic is not the only calamity to befall south China this year. The region has been inundated by heavy rainfall since late May, creating a risk of catastrophic flooding.
Conflicts connected to water-security are often related to climate change issues. However, the link between water-scarcity-related risks and security challenges is not as straightforward, direct and immediate as often perceived. The online workshop ‘Mobilising decision-makers on water scarcity-induced conflict risks: The Water, Peace and Security Partnership’, organised by the European Peacebuilding Liaison Office (EPLO) and adelphi, looked into this complex relationship.
As water is the most disruptive element in the ongoing climate crisis, how land is managed plays a major role in taming this disruption. This publication shows that avoiding, reducing and reversing land degradation can have positive long-term gains in water security.
The 2020 edition of the World Water Development Report (WWDR 2020) entitled ‘Water and Climate Change’ aims at helping the water community to tackle the challenges of climate change and informing the climate change community about the opportunities that improved water management offers in terms of adaptation and mitigation.
Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan are currently engaged in vital talks over the dispute relating to the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Nile River. While non-African actors are increasingly present in the negotiations, the African Union (AU) is playing a marginal role.
On 28 January 2020, the German Federal Foreign Office held a conference in Berlin to mark the launch of the Green Central Asia initiative. Opened by Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and the High Representative of the EU Josep Borrell, it brought together the foreign ministers of the Central Asian states, as well as more than 250 participants to discuss the climate and security challenges facing Central Asia—and how the Green Central Asia initiative can contribute to addressing them.
In January 2020, the German Federal Foreign Office launched Green Central Asia, a regional initiative on climate and security in Central Asia and Afghanistan. The aim of the initiative is to support a dialogue in the region on climate change and associated risks in order to foster regional integration between the six countries involved.
A high-level ministerial conference in Berlin is looking at the impact of climate change on regional security in Central Asia. The aim is to foster stronger regional cooperation, improve the exchange of information and form connections with academia and civil society.