Achieving Water Security for Asia
AbstractSponsored by the Asian Development Bank, Asian Water Development Outlook is a future-oriented analysis of water security for the Asian countries. The future water problems of the Asian countries and their solutions will be very different compared to those of the past. While historical knowledge will be useful, solving water problems of the future will require additional skills, innovative approaches and new mindsets. It will also require a determined attempt to coordinate energy, food, environment and industrial policies of a nation, all of which have intimate linkages to water. Each will affect the other, and, in turn, be affected by the others. Policies in all these areas will be also influenced by exogenous forces such as demographic transitions, advances in technology and information and communication systems, climatic change, globalization, free trade and increasing social activism. All these and other associated developments will mean that water management in Asia will change more during the next 20 years than in the past 2000 years. In-depth analyses prepared for the Outlook indicate that the Asian countries are not facing a water crisis because of physical scarcities of the resource, but because of poor management. With the knowledge, technology and experience that are now available within the Asian region as a whole, the water problems of all the Asian countries can be solved. Given adequate capacity development, intensified political will, and appropriate investments, one can be cautiously optimistic of Asia's water future.