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UNEP, UNU Launch Water Quality Guidelines for Ecosystems Project

unep-unu10 October 2013: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP), together with the UN University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) and the Global Water Systems Project (GWSP), have launched the International Water Quality Guidelines for Ecosystems (IWQGES) project.

According to UNEP, international guidelines are currently available for drinking water, recreational use, irrigation, livestock and water reuse, among others, but no comparable international water quality standards exist for ecosystems, despite the fact that the health of ecosystems is threatened by declining quality and quantity of water.

The IWQGES project aims to develop a set of science-based policy and technical guidelines enabling regional, national and local authorities to improve their frameworks for sustainable management of their water resources and aquatic ecosystems. According to UNEP, the guidelines will include a focus on assisting developing countries to improve the protection of their aquatic resource base.

The IWQGES project was launched on the sidelines of the Budapest Water Summit on 10 October 2013. [UNEP Press Release] [UNU-EHS Press Release] [IISD RS Coverage of the Budapest Water Summit]