Water, Conflict, and Human Rights: Emerging Challenges and Solutions
February 23-25, 2011
In July 2010, the United Nations adopted resolution 64/292 recognizing a human right to clean drinking water and sanitation. In adopting this resolution, the UN noted that about 1 billion people lack access to safe drinking water, 2.6 billion people lack access to basic sanitation, and 1.5 million children under age 5 die each year from diseases related to lack of clean water and sanitation. In various places around the globe, the provision of water is undergoing profound institutional change due to increased privatization of water resources. In the US West, and in many other places, population growth and increased demand for energy place great strains on water supplies. The predicted impact of climate change on water access makes all of these challenges even more pressing. At this conference, distinguished keynote speakers, prominent researchers, government officials, and engaged citizens discussed these challenges in an effort to promote the sort of understanding necessary for developing durable solutions to these problems.