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United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Contribute to water security and to the promotion of a water culture that improves people's quality of life

Salvadoran Water Authority (

    The challenges facing the country in water issues include low levels of access to quality services, multiple vulnerabilities in the sector, insufficient flow of economic resources for project implementation, and lack of innovation in the field.

    Given the above, the General Law on Water Resources was submitted to the Legislative Assembly and approved in December 2021 by the government of President Nayib Bukele. Article 10 establishes the institutional framework and creates the Salvadoran Water Authority, which began its operations on July 12, 2022 to assure the enforcement and compliance of the law. Hence, the Salvadoran Water Authority turns into the superior, deliberative, guiding, and normative body in terms of water resources policy.

    In order to comply with the Sustainable Development Goals, specifically SDG 6: Drinking Water and Sanitation, two major strategic objectives were defined within the Institutional Strategic Plan of the Salvadoran Water Authority:

    • To promote the integrated management of water resources for the well-being of the population and the development of economic, social, and environmental activities in a sustainable manner.
    • To develop innovative solutions that generate value by materializing the human right to water and sanitation.

    The strategic actions that will ensure compliance with the above mentioned objectives are as follows:

    1. Water Resources Management: this strategic action is focused on facilitating water resource management and its efficient use in accordance with the provisions of the Law, as well as its sustainability and water security, orienting it to changes in user behavior, in order to benefit the population.
    2. Research + Development + Innovation (R+D+i) to Improve the Quality of Life: Creates and develops innovative solutions by applying agile methodologies that utilize results-based project management to generate value for the population and an impact on the environment.
    3. Institutional Strengthening: Develops the potential of collaborators, works to strengthen the institutional identity of the Salvadoran Water Authority, and establishes long-term relationships with institutions and organizations of interest to generate alliances and cooperation bonds.
    4. Promotion of the Circular Water Economy: Promotes the sustainable development of water resources, generating a positive impact on the population and recognizing the full value of the resource.
    Expected Impact

    It is expected that the implementation of specific actions will generate regulations for water resources including its uses, permits, and allocations. In addition, actions focused on water audits will be carried out to guarantee the population the adequate use and disposal of treated water. All these efforts will be supported by the creation of a new water culture, which will allow academic institutions to incorporate in their curricula a new form of water management from homes, schools and, of course, higher education institutions. This will generate awareness and commitment to the proper use of water and its final disposal in the country's different bodies of water.

    In addition, projects that incorporate an innovative approach will be encouraged. Research and the development of projects that incorporate technological elements and world best practices will also be promoted. These will be measured through mid-term evaluations which will lead to improvements in the implementation process.

    The development of projects focused on a circular water economy will be supported, fostering the reuse of water in all its dimensions and contributing directly to water security. Transboundary work for the protection of the watersheds that are shared with El Salvador's neighboring countries will also be encouraged.

    As part of the continuous improvement of the Salvadoran Water Authority, capacities and material resources will be strengthened, such as equipment, infrastructure, and tools. This will allow the execution of tasks in an efficient and agile manner, which will contribute directly to the integral management of water resources.

    • United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
    • International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
    • Conference of Ibero-American Water Directors (CODIA)
    • Global Water Partnership (GWP)
    • Catholic Relief Services (CRS)

    Goal 6

    Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

    Goal 6


    By 2030, achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all


    Proportion of population using safely managed drinking water services


    By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations


    Proportion of population using (a) safely managed sanitation services and (b) a hand-washing facility with soap and water


    By 2030, improve water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials, halving the proportion of untreated wastewater and substantially increasing recycling and safe reuse globally


    Proportion of domestic and industrial wastewater flows safely treated


    Proportion of bodies of water with good ambient water quality


    By 2030, substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity

    Change in water-use efficiency over time


    Level of water stress: freshwater withdrawal as a proportion of available freshwater resources


    By 2030, implement integrated water resources management at all levels, including through transboundary cooperation as appropriate


    Degree of integrated water resources management 


    Proportion of transboundary basin area with an operational arrangement for water cooperation


    By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes

    Change in the extent of water-related ecosystems over time


    By 2030, expand international cooperation and capacity-building support to developing countries in water- and sanitation-related activities and programmes, including water harvesting, desalination, water efficiency, wastewater treatment, recycling and reuse technologies

    Amount of water- and sanitation-related official development assistance that is part of a government-coordinated spending plan


    Support and strengthen the participation of local communities in improving water and sanitation management


    Proportion of local administrative units with established and operational policies and procedures for participation of local communities in water and sanitation management

    Name Description

    National Rainwater Harvesting Program

    Other, please specify
    The program will be carried out with contributions from different cooperation agencies involved in water issues that wish to join the effort, as well as the institution’s own resources for the execution of projects.
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    Action Network
    water logo
    Salvadoran Water Authority
    1. Latin America and the Caribbean
    Other beneficiaries
    • Non-profit social organizations with legal status whose purpose is to provide drinking water services to the community (water boards)
    • General population
    More information
    United States of America
    United States of America
    Contact Information

    Jorge Castaneda, President of the Salvadoran Water Authority