Why IWRM (in) Karlsruhe?!
Statement Prof. Hartwig Steusloff | Fraunhofer IOSB
The finite global water resources are not substitutable and can only be extended with the aid of energy-intensive technologies. The growth of the world’s population and climate change will only aggravate the situation: megacities like those in the semi-arid regions of East Asia will be confronted with a serious shortage of ready-to-use water in the coming decade at the latest. Here, integrated management of water resources (IWRM) acquires multidimensional significance, which is reflected in the newly-defined scope of IWRM Karlsruhe 2012.
The conference, the poster sessions and the exhibition plus industry forum of IWRM Karlsruhe 2012 provide a platform for discussing and defining the contribution the IWRM makes towards overcoming the global shortage of water. Your contributions to IWRM Karlsruhe 2012 will become part of a “Karlsruhe Declaration” on the potential of the IWRM, addressing international politics, administration, and science.
The international IWRM community is counting on your contribution in Karlsruhe!
Prof. Dr. Hartwig Steusloff
(Chairman of the IWRM Karlsruhe Advisory Board)
Global change, increasing demand for water, and a multitude of conflicts over usage all require an economically efficient but simultaneously socially and ecologically sound water management. Further development of the “Integrated Water Resources Management” (IWRM) approach forms a key element of this. Future IWRM concepts should contain more standardised objectives and performance indicators that analyse interacting subsystems and offer recommendations for the right course action for sustainable water management. Required for this are eight novel model approaches that make it possible to apply a reliable risk-based test of management strategies under altered peripheral conditions. Improvement of the regional supply of high-quality water particularly in development countries also presupposes collaborative and adaptive management of drinking water, sewage, run-off water, and groundwater. Distribution infrastructures and storage options must be optimised in a conceptual as well as a technical sense in order to minimise the sometimes considerable losses and to produce buffer resources for highly variable volumes of water. Also required are demand-driven supply concepts whilst taking the underlying economic and social fabric into account.
The focus of the redesigned IWRM Karlsruhe 2012 is therefore on development of new approaches and procedures for coordinated management of water resources in the interests of economic and social optimisation whilst at the same time assuring the sustainability of ecosystem functions and services. We look forward to joint discussion and definition of the IWRM’s future orientation.
In the last few years, numerous IWRM projects supported by the BMBF have been and are being frequently carried out by the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in places such as Vietnam, Indonesia, on the Volga, the Volta basin, and the Jordan region (SMART project, GLOWA Jordan). Successful realisation of these projects can only be achieved in close cooperation with numerous partners from Germany and in the target regions. In the future, too, the KIT, with its resident competence, will continue to contribute significantly to safeguarding the worldwide supply of water.
Dr. Peter Fritz
(Vice President Research and Innovation, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology)