The Minister for Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification, Bradley Tovosia this week has called for urgent action to properly coordinate and collaborate towards managing water resources and resilience in Pacific countries at the sixth Pacific Water & Wastewater Ministers Forum in Nadi, Fiji.
The two days forum from November 14-15 gathered together Ministers and top officials from the Pacific region on the theme: ‘Water Security and Resilience’, which was held parallel with the Annual 13th Pacific Water and Wastewater Conference and Expo at Denarau Island.
Delivering Solomon Island country paper on Tuesday, Tovosia called for urgent action to strategize for better cooperation and coordination amongst member countries and the donor community.
“If there is a moment that Pacific Islanders are required to properly strategize for better cooperation, coordination, technology sharing and research skill transfer, to achieve the intent of this and future forums on ‘Water Security and Resilience’ it is now,” he said.
The Forum heard many distinctive stories on the water and waste water situation across member countries, which, needs further coordination and collaboration amongst key stakeholders to address the Pacific regions water issues.
“With these and many accounts reported by prominent Pacific leaders in this forum, I am certain that the implementation of the outcomes of this Pacific Water and Wastewater Ministers Forum 2022 including past commitments, require and need meaningful and inclusive collaboration and partnership across regional and national sectors and stakeholders than ever before, especially when we are faced with the ongoing challenges of climate change, and unprecedented Geohazard as threat to water security,” Tovosia said.
The Forum noted there are many programs and projects implemented within the region which are either donor funded or individual Government funded, which, urgently requires information, skillset and experiences to be properly contextualized to address local specific needs.
The Forum further noted that achieving a healthy, resilient and productive water sector needs global solutions translated into regional and more importantly, local actions.
“The Pacific through this platform needs to take urgent, robust and firm actions including the availing of dedicated financial resources and technologies to our island countries to sustainably conserve, use and protect water resources to meet the needs of our present and future generations to be more resilient,” Tovosia told the Forum.
At the end of the Forum, the Government of Solomon Islands welcomed the 6th Water Ministers Forum as a platform for reaffirming its political commitment and continued action to fostering water development as well as for exchanging experiences, best practices, and innovative approaches among the governments, industry and other key water stakeholders.