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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2006 > March
Media Note
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
March 16, 2006


Under Secretary Dobriansky to Lead U.S Delegation to World Water Forum in Mexico City

Under Secretary for Democracy and Global Affairs Paula Dobriansky will head the U.S delegation to the 4th World Water Forum in Mexico City, March 16-22, 2006. Under Secretary Dobriansky also led the U.S. delegation to the 3rd World Water Forum in Kyoto in March 2003, which was attended by more than 15,000 people, including more than 100 Ministers.

The United States has a demonstrated commitment to eradicating poverty. As President Bush has said, combating poverty is a "moral imperative." Access to safe water and adequate sanitation along with sound water management are key components to addressing poverty, preventing disease and promoting regional stability.

Since 2002, through the Water for the Poor Initiative managed by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the United States has provided more than 24 million people with improved access to drinking water and more than 26 million people with access to sanitation. The United States has also worked to catalyze action and improve donor coordination through a number of partnerships in areas including issues related to water and health, transboundary water, integrated water resources management, and innovative approaches to financing to mobilize capital for water related infrastructure.

The World Water Forum in Mexico City provides an important opportunity to build on these efforts. The focus of the meeting is "local action," which the U.S. strongly supports. Building capacity at the local level to empower individual action and entrepreneurship will be key to addressing many of the water challenges facing the world today. The United States has been working closely with Mexico to develop a number of innovative features at the Forum that should promote concrete action. These include the "Institute@WWF4" a learning center for expert-to-expert trainings on innovative approaches, new technologies, and best practices; and partnership meetings where groups can work together to plan out new activities and reach out to new partners. The World Water Forum will also launch the Water Action and Networking Database a web based tool for exchanging best practices and lessons learned on water and sanitation. More than 70 experts from throughout the U.S. government will be participating in World Water Forum activities.

Under Secretary Dobriansky will attend the Ministerial Session of the World Water Forum. She will co-chair a roundtable discussion among Ministers on mobilizing resources for water and sanitation and will participate in the launch of the Water Action and Networking Database.

Additional information on the World Water Forum can be found at http://www.worldwaterforum.org/home/home.asp. Additional information on U.S. water-related initiatives can be found at www.sdp.gov and http://www.usaid.gov/our_work/environment/water/index.html.


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