Human Right to Water and Sanitation must be in the SDGs!


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This week negotiations on the final text for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are taking place in the UN. The outcome should be the final agreement that world leaders will sign for in the Summit in September . We want to see an explicit mention of the Human Right to Water and Sanitation in the final text.

The ‘zero-draft’ can be read here:

Paragraph 15 of the Zero Draft calls for “affordable drinking water” rather than the enjoyment of the human right to water and sanitation that encompasses other important principles (including availability, accessibility, acceptability, safety, and sufficiency). As seen with the MDGs, emphasis on one aspect of the normative content of this right leads to inappropriate solutions that neglect the needs of the most vulnerable segments of the population.  We recommend to change this into “full enjoyment of Human Right to water and sanitation”.

Paragraph 26 calls for “efficient” use of water and energy. We recommend to change this into “ equitable and sustainable”.

These details make sense as they make a difference. They are important to keep world leaders to their promises and commitments after September 2015.

As the world water crisis deepens and proliferates, a hierarchy of water use that prioritizes human rights is essential to ensuring equitable and environmentally sustainable use of limited supplies. If the  Post-2015 Development Agenda is to succeed, the text must reflect these essential concerns.

Read the full explanation and amendments from the NGO Mining Working Group here (attached)

We hope to see these seemingly small, but significant changes in the final text and we ask you to lobby your governments to adopt them!

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