Global Water Strategy

Stories

Reaching a #WaterSecureWorld for All

Watershed Moments in the Implementation of the U.S. Government Global Water Strategy

Water security is essential for preventing disease, growing economies, and promoting global stability. Yet, three in 10 people lack safe drinking water in their homes worldwide. Many nations suffer from water stress and are threatened by increasingly severe droughts and floods. As resources degrade and become more scarce, conflicts over shared water resources across borders and within nations have the potential to increase.

The U.S. Government believes in a water-secure world, where people and nations have the water they need to be healthy, prosperous, and resilient. That’s why more than 17 agencies and departments—led by the U.S. Department of State and USAID—contributed to the creation of the first U.S. Government Global Water Strategy. To achieve its vision, the U.S. Government works with partner countries and other stakeholders to advance four interrelated strategic objectives that include:

  • Promoting sustainable access to safe drinking water and sanitation; and adoption of key hygiene behaviors
  • Encouraging the sound management and protection of freshwater resources
  • Reducing conflict by promoting cooperation on shared waters
  • Strengthening water sector governance, financing, and institutions

In celebration of World Water Day 2020, we are sharing progress made by the interagency and partner countries in the first two years of implementing the strategy (from its launch November 2017 through 2019). Scroll to learn more about success, innovations, and lessons learned in working toward a #WaterSecureWorld for all.

The U.S. Government Global Water Strategy

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Key Results

Drinking Water

3.6 million

Number of people gaining access to an improved drinking water service due to USG assistance in fiscal year 2017

USAID

Sanitation

3.2 million

Number of people gaining access to an improved sanitation service due to USG assistance in fiscal year 2017

USAID

Emergency Response

5

Number of countries that the CDC assisted with waterborne disease emergencies in 2017/2018.

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Interagency Stories

Access to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation

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Andrea Martinsen of the CDC pumps water for a team of field staff who are testing free residual chlorine (FRC) at hands pumps fitted with inline chlorinators. Photo credit: CDC
March 2020 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Lab capacity participants in Panama. Photo credit.
March 2020 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
The CDC is working to make alcohol-based hand sanitizer for health care workers in Kabarole District, Uganda. Photo credit: CDC
March 2020 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Water Resources Management

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MCC CEO Sean Cairncross speaks to a group of women in the village of Margou, Niger. Photo credit: MCC
March 2020 Millennium Challenge Corporation
WADI supports local communities to grow native seedlings utilizing water conserving technologies and sustainable nursery management practices. Photo credit: USDA
March 2020 U.S. Department of Agriculture
Natural resource professionals from Palau participated in a four-week internship in Hawaii through the Micronesia Conservation Trust and the University of Hawaii where they were mentored by staff from the USDA Forest Service and the Hawaii Permanent Plot Network to learn the protocols for forest dynamic monitoring.  Photo credit: USDA1
March 2020 U.S. Department of Agriculture

Cooperation on Shared Waters

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Gullies are caused by concentrated rainfall runoff discharged onto sensitive highly-erosive sandy soils. The primary imperative to control gully erosion is to avoid the concentration of runoff, chiefly through small-scale storage and by encouraging infiltration into the sandy soils. Credit: Michael J. Furniss/U.S. Forest Service Office of International Programs
March 2019 U.S. Department of Agriculture
An example of a water resource assessment image from Nepal. Credit: NASA
March 2019 National Aeronautics and Space Administration
U.S. water expert Dr. Mel Laituri participates in a radio interview in Nairobi, Kenya. Credit: Chris Rich, USWP
March 2019 U.S. Department of State

Governance and Financing

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Global Participation: Countries that made commitments to the AMR challenge (as of December 11, 2019). Credit: CDC
March 2020 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
A family looks on as technician Dennis Koroma maps water pipes in Freetown, Sierra Leone. Waterborne diseases are a pressing problem, exacerbated by poor infrastructure, including broken pipes. MCC’s investments support the Government of Sierra Leone in its efforts to strengthen Freetown’s water utility.
March 2020 Millennium Challenge Corporation
U.S. Forestry Service Aquatic Expert Mike Owen discusses grazing and stream bank stability, and highlights the different ways local environmental conditions can impact the area’s watersheds. Credit: NGO FORZA
March 2019 U.S. Department of Agriculture
Executive Branch logo

Mapping Progress

See where the United States is mobilizing its diplomatic, development, and scientific leadership to build a more #WaterSecureWorld

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