Third Meeting of the Global High-Level Panel - San Jose, Costa Rica, December 7-9, 2016

The Global High-Level Panel on Water and Peace has held its Third Meeting in San José, Cost Rica, from 7 to 9 December 2016.

The Panel is tasked with making recommendations in order to facilitate the role of water as an important factor for building peace and cooperation. It will also develop a set of proposals aimed at strengthening the global architecture to prevent and resolve water-related conflicts, among others. Seven Themes have been identified to structure the work of the Panel:

  • Theme 1 “Protecting water in conflicts and using water as a key instrument for the reconstruction and reconciliation process in post-conflict situations”.
  • Theme 2 “The role of international water law for peace and security”.
  • Theme 3 “Instruments/approaches to avoid intersectoral conflicts”.
  • Theme 4 “New mechanisms for hydro-diplomacy”.
  • Theme 5 “Water quality as an important issue for the prevention and resolution of freshwater conflicts”.
  • Theme 6 “Financial mechanisms to incentivize multi-sectoral and transboundary water cooperation”.
  • Theme 7 “Supporting evidence-based decisions”.

Five of these themes were discussed in San José (you can find the agenda of the meeting here). The Panel has been able to make substantial progress on these Themes. It has also begun to reflect on the structure and drafting of its future report, which will be launched in September 2017.

On the last day of the meeting, the Government of Costa Rica organised a field trip to the area of Turrialba where the panellists could visit the Guayabo National Monument, which gave them a chance to recognize the role of ancestral hydraulic infrastructure in the development of indigenous peoples. The panellists also visited the Tropical Agronomic Research and Teaching Center (CATIE), where a meeting was organised with local leaders involved in the conflict around the construction of hydroelectric dams on a river in the area.
In parallel, the Symphony on Water and Peace has been further developed by a composition of the Costa-Rican musician and musical director Carlos Guzman.

The Third Meeting of the Panel can be held as very successful. You can view a few pictures from the meeting below: