Wednesday, November 6, 2019

UNESCO meeting on building water resilient cities in the age of climate change, 7 & 8 November

UNESCO Media Advisory No.2019-47

UNESCO meeting on building water resilient cities in the age of climate change, 7 & 8 November

Paris, 06 November – UNESCO in collaboration with New York University, will host a colloquium at its Headquarters in Paris (7-8 November) to share lessons learned from the havoc climate change is already wreaking on cities around the world: Hurricane Sandy unleashed its fury on New York City in 2012, floods hit Paris in 2017 and Cape Town experienced water shortages earlier this year.

The colloquium will examine innovative solutions and strategies, including funding, needed to handle increasingly frequent extreme hydrological events, develop resilient infrastructures and promote the sustainable preservation of urban ecosystems. Innovative technology solutions to improve resilience will be high on the agenda alongside discussions about the role of public education and the media in building community responses and developing a culture of climate-crisis awareness.

Dubbed the "Metropolitan R2020" E.C.O.-R.I.S.E. (Eco-development & Climate-impacts Offsetting challenges for Resilient Infrastructure & Sustainable Ecosystems), the colloquium aims to create an experience-sharing forum among metropolitan stakeholders, from the private and public sectors, as well as media and academe.

Notable speakers will include: Youssef Filali-Meknassi, Director, UNESCO's Water Science Divison; Eric Mac Farlane, Deputy Commissioner, New York City Department of Design and Construction, Benjamin Gestin, Chief Executive Officer, Eau de Paris, Thierry Witkowicz, Senior Vice President, Business Development Smart Cities, Veolia (the French-based resource management group), Diane d'Arras, President, International Water Association (IWA), Maximilien Pellegrini, CEO, Suez Water (France), Sébastien Maire, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Paris, Fadi Comair, Honorary President, Mediterranean Network of Basin Organisations (MENBO) and CEO, Water Resources Lebanon, Milo Fiasconaro, Executive Director, Aqua Publica Europa, the EU Association of Public Water Operators, Amit Chanan, Director of Infrastructure Projects, City of Sydney (Australia).

The University of Lille (France), the School of Engineering of the City of Paris, W-SMART (International Alliance of Water and Wastewater Utilities for Sustainable Water Security), Greater Paris Sanitation Authority (SIAAP) and the International Water Association's Specialists Group of Water Safety & Security Management (IWA-W2SM) have also contributed to the development of the colloquium.



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Contact for mandatory press accreditation: Djibril Kébé, UNESCO Press Service, (, +33(0)1 45 68 17 41)



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