The WE-ACT project is co-funded by the European Commission’s Horizon Europe programme, the project prompts a paradigm shift towards climate-sensitive water allocation systems and financing mechanisms. WE-ACT project’s overall goal is to demonstrate a Decision Support System (DSS) for water allocation in a Central Asian transboundary river to increase shared benefits and foster the adaptation of water resources management and planning to climate change. In addition, WE-ACT aims for inclusive, forward-looking and climate risk-informed water allocation planning and management processes, ultimately guiding decision-makers in transboundary rivers to share transboundary waters equitably among different sectors and users. These will reap the benefits of appropriate water allocation regimes via improved water policies, valuation of water, and stakeholder engagement. Concretely, the project will be carried out in two catchments of a transboundary river basin in Central Asia, namely the Naryn and Kara Darya catchments of the Syr Darya river basin, covering parts of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Based on a reliable data supply chain that captures a thorough understanding of water availability, demand, footprint and allocation in a glacier-fed river basin on the back-end, water resources managers will operate an accessible and intuitive DSS on the front-end to understand, manage and communicate management options. Data supply chain and DSS will be matched with an in-depth understanding of water policies, financing instruments, incentives and stakeholder priorities that face increasing pressures of climate change, growing demand and economic water dependency notably in the energy (hydropower) and agriculture (water-intensive crops) sectors. WE-ACT aims to: enhance the accessibility, usability and exchange of hydro-meteorological data between stakeholders in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan; enhance the understanding of the status quo of water availability, water demand, water use, and water allocation; improve the understanding of the economic and societal value of water and developments in key economic sectors to inform water allocation strategies; inform forward-looking transboundary water allocation strategies under climate change and socio-economic developments; enable water managers and decision-makers to efficiently allocate water in a transboundary setting using digital technologies; improve water policies and institutional capacity addressing economic and legal aspects of cross border cooperation and the impact pathways of the DSS towards efficient climate-sensitive water allocation. WE-ACT goes beyond the state of the art of digital instruments for water allocation, as the DSS will rely on innovative procedures, processes, and technologies. The project proposes a comprehensive project methodology consisting of three components: Component 1 lays the foundation of data and information needed to understand water allocation challenges. It consists of 3 building blocks, In-situ measurement & soft sensor: improving data availability; Integrated model system: water availability, demand & allocation; and Future scenarios: climate risk informed water management. Component 2 provides the building blocks to move from information to impact, through stakeholder engagement, cross-border policies for sustainable benefit-sharing, and finance mechanisms for efficient water allocation and use. Component 3 contains the building blocks for the technical realization of the Data warehouse & model engine, as a one-stop-shop for data needed to build the Digital skeleton of the DSS.
The WE-ACT project is expected to accelerate the implementation of several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) related to water and climate change, including SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation), SDG 13 (climate action), and SDG 17 (partnerships for the goals).
Firstly, the project will contribute to achieving SDG 6 by promoting more efficient and equitable allocation of water resources in a transboundary river, which will improve water availability and sanitation for the populations in the catchment areas. The project will also help to increase the resilience of the water sector to climate change, which is critical for achieving SDG 6. Furthermore, the project's focus on stakeholder engagement and inclusive water allocation planning will contribute to SDG 6's targets on participatory water governance. WE-ACT predominantly addresses indicator 6.4., and indicator 6.5, additionally it contributes to 6.a and 6.b.
Secondly, WE-ACT contributes to SDG 12 which aims to achieve sustainable consumption and production and management and efficient use of natural resources. This is because the project focuses on improving water resource management in the pilot areas, which includes promoting sustainable practices for water use and ensuring the efficient use of water resources. By improving the management of water resources, the project can also contribute to achieving other targets under SDG 12 such as reducing waste generation, improving resource efficiency, and promoting sustainable consumption and production.
Thirdly, the project will contribute to achieving SDG 13 by promoting climate-sensitive water allocation systems and financing mechanisms, which will increase the resilience of water resources management and planning to climate change. By providing decision-makers with better information and digital tools, the project will enable them to make more informed decisions about water allocation in the face of climate change. The project will also help to reduce water-related greenhouse gas emissions, particularly in the energy and agriculture sectors, which will contribute to SDG 13's targets on mitigation.
Finally, the project will contribute to achieving SDG 17 by promoting partnerships for the goals between stakeholders in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. The project's focus on enhancing the accessibility, usability, and exchange of hydro-meteorological data between stakeholders will improve cross-border cooperation and benefit-sharing, which is critical for achieving SDG 17's targets on international cooperation and partnerships. The project will also promote partnerships between stakeholders in different sectors, including water, energy, and agriculture, to ensure that water allocation decisions are informed by the needs and priorities of all users.
The project also has the potential to contribute to other SDGs such as SDG 2 (Zero Hunger) and SDG 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy) by reducing the water footprint of water-using sectors, promoting sustainable use and protection of water resources, and fostering adoption of digital technologies in water management. Overall, the project has the potential to contribute to interlinkages between various SDGs and accelerate their implementation. By improving water availability, resilience to climate change, and promoting cross-border cooperation and partnerships, the project will help to accelerate progress towards the SDGs and their interlinkages.
Technische Universitaet Muenchen; Bayerische Forschungsallianz Bavarian Research Alliance GmbH; Portolan Association; Nelen & Schuurmans Technology B.V.; International Water Management Institute; Universiteit Twente; FutureWater SL; HAEDES BV; Brunel University London; Inosens Doo Novi Sad; Julius-Maximilians-Universitaet Wuerzburg; Université De Fribourg; Central-Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences;
For additional information such as relevant photos, short video clips, or key documents related to our initiative, we invite you to visit our official website at weact-project.eu. There, you can find press releases, information on our partners, and promotional material to help you learn more about our project.
The links are as follows:
SDGS & Targets
Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
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
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
Change in the extent of water-related ecosystems over time
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
Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries
Number of deaths, missing persons and directly affected persons attributed to disasters per 100,000 population
Number of countries that adopt and implement national disaster risk reduction strategies in line with the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030
Proportion of local governments that adopt and implement local disaster risk reduction strategies in line with national disaster risk reduction strategies
Integrate climate change measures into national policies, strategies and planning
Number of countries with nationally determined contributions, long-term strategies, national adaptation plans and adaptation communications, as reported to the secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
Total greenhouse gas emissions per year
Improve education, awareness-raising and human and institutional capacity on climate change mitigation, adaptation, impact reduction and early warning
Extent to which (i) global citizenship education and (ii) education for sustainable development are mainstreamed in (a) national education policies; (b) curricula; (c) teacher education; and (d) student assessment
Implement the commitment undertaken by developed-country parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to a goal of mobilizing jointly $100 billion annually by 2020 from all sources to address the needs of developing countries in the context of meaningful mitigation actions and transparency on implementation and fully operationalize the Green Climate Fund through its capitalization as soon as possible
Amounts provided and mobilized in United States dollars per year in relation to the continued existing collective mobilization goal of the $100 billion commitment through to 2025
Promote mechanisms for raising capacity for effective climate change-related planning and management in least developed countries and small island developing States, including focusing on women, youth and local and marginalized communities
Number of least developed countries and small island developing States with nationally determined contributions, long-term strategies, national adaptation plans and adaptation communications, as reported to the secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development
Strengthen domestic resource mobilization, including through international support to developing countries, to improve domestic capacity for tax and other revenue collection
Developed countries to implement fully their official development assistance commitments, including the commitment by many developed countries to achieve the target of 0.7 per cent of ODA/GNI to developing countries and 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of ODA/GNI to least developed countries; ODA providers are encouraged to consider setting a target to provide at least 0.20 per cent of ODA/GNI to least developed countries
Mobilize additional financial resources for developing countries from multiple sources
Additional financial resources mobilized for developing countries from multiple sources
Assist developing countries in attaining long-term debt sustainability through coordinated policies aimed at fostering debt financing, debt relief and debt restructuring, as appropriate, and address the external debt of highly indebted poor countries to reduce debt distress
Adopt and implement investment promotion regimes for least developed countries
Number of countries that adopt and implement investment promotion regimes for developing countries, including the least developed countries
Enhance North-South, South-South and triangular regional and international cooperation on and access to science, technology and innovation and enhance knowledge sharing on mutually agreed terms, including through improved coordination among existing mechanisms, in particular at the United Nations level, and through a global technology facilitation mechanism
Fixed Internet broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants, by speed
Promote the development, transfer, dissemination and diffusion of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on favourable terms, including on concessional and preferential terms, as mutually agreed
Total amount of funding for developing countries to promote the development, transfer, dissemination and diffusion of environmentally sound technologies
Fully operationalize the technology bank and science, technology and innovation capacity-building mechanism for least developed countries by 2017 and enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology
Enhance international support for implementing effective and targeted capacity-building in developing countries to support national plans to implement all the Sustainable Development Goals, including through North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation
Dollar value of financial and technical assistance (including through North-South, South‑South and triangular cooperation) committed to developing countries
Promote a universal, rules-based, open, non-discriminatory and equitable multilateral trading system under the World Trade Organization, including through the conclusion of negotiations under its Doha Development Agenda
Significantly increase the exports of developing countries, in particular with a view to doubling the least developed countries’ share of global exports by 2020
Developing countries’ and least developed countries’ share of global exports
Realize timely implementation of duty-free and quota-free market access on a lasting basis for all least developed countries, consistent with World Trade Organization decisions, including by ensuring that preferential rules of origin applicable to imports from least developed countries are transparent and simple, and contribute to facilitating market access
Weighted average tariffs faced by developing countries, least developed countries and small island developing States
Enhance global macroeconomic stability, including through policy coordination and policy coherence
Enhance policy coherence for sustainable development
Respect each country’s policy space and leadership to establish and implement policies for poverty eradication and sustainable development
Enhance the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development, complemented by multi-stakeholder partnerships that mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technology and financial resources, to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals in all countries, in particular developing countries
Number of countries reporting progress in multi-stakeholder development effectiveness monitoring frameworks that support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals
Encourage and promote effective public, public-private and civil society partnerships, building on the experience and resourcing strategies of partnerships
Amount in United States dollars committed to public-private partnerships for infrastructure
By 2020, enhance capacity-building support to developing countries, including for least developed countries and small island developing States, to increase significantly the availability of high-quality, timely and reliable data disaggregated by income, gender, age, race, ethnicity, migratory status, disability, geographic location and other characteristics relevant in national contexts
Statistical capacity indicator for Sustainable Development Goal monitoring
Number of countries with a national statistical plan that is fully funded and under implementation, by source of funding
By 2030, build on existing initiatives to develop measurements of progress on sustainable development that complement gross domestic product, and support statistical capacity-building in developing countries
Proportion of countries that (a) have conducted at least one population and housing census in the last 10 years; and (b) have achieved 100 per cent birth registration and 80 per cent death registration
SDG 14 targets covered
Deliverables & Timeline
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- Asia and Pacific
German Research Center for Geosciences (GFZ)
Basin Water Organization SYRDARYA - BWO "Syrdarya"
International Centre for Water Management and Global Change (ICWRGC)
UNECE - United Nations Economic Commission for Europe