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PREFACE

When a major river, lake, or aquifer system is shared by two or more nations, decision makers and mangers face challenges in ensuring the sustainable use of water resources. Increasing demands for freshwater for multiple societal and environmental needs and intensified stresses on resources due to climate variation and climate change in many areas, has resulted in the nations involved, being vulnerable to tensions and conflict. Monitoring, predicting and preempting transboundary water conflicts will become ever more central to future human and environmental security. The good news is that historically, nations across the world have often chosen cooperation over conflict through ‘hydro-diplomacy’ and ‘hydrological cooperation’. Scientific findings are full of lessons from the past which can guide current and future policy-makers in water management decisions. This report focuses on the challenges and opportunities facing North America - a continent with about 6.5% of its area covered by surface freshwater. The region includes the Great Lakes which hold 18% of the world’s fresh lake water and boasts four of the largest transboundary rivers in terms of discharge: the Mississippi, St. Lawrence, Columbia, and the Yukon. These rivers and their basins are subject to interstate and international agreements that ensure that all basin countries get some portion of the water and that the rivers remain navigable for commerce. Guided by the targets for safe water supply and improved sanitation set by the World Summit on Sustainable Development and the work of UN-Water, UNEP’s present and future commitments and activities relating to freshwater are embodied in its Water Policy and in its Medium Term Strategy which address water resources in the context of ecosystem management and climate change. This publication presents a comprehensive assessment of the hydropolitical vulnerabilities and resiliencies of North America’s international waters, including detailed information on

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NORTH AMERICA :Hydropolitical Vulnerability and Resilience along International Waters  

This report focuses on the challenges and opportunities facing North America, a continent with about 6.5% of its area covered by surface fre...

NORTH AMERICA :Hydropolitical Vulnerability and Resilience along International Waters  

This report focuses on the challenges and opportunities facing North America, a continent with about 6.5% of its area covered by surface fre...

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