WWF and EC – Partnering for water and beyondAs part of Freshwater and Wetlands programme, WWF today announced a new project in the Godavari basin that stretches in five states across western and central India. Titled, “Reducing the impact of water-intensive and polluting crops: sustainable sources of freshwater to support the livelihoods of poor communities in the Godavari basin, India”, the project is funded by European Union.
This project is under the European Union’s “Cofinancing with European development NGOs actions in developing countries programme for India” and is a joint effort with WWF-UK. The project will be implemented by WWF-India with communities and partners.
Speaking on the occasion Mr. Ravi Singh, Secretary General and CEO, WWF-India said, “Ensuring freshwater resources for agriculture and human consumption is increasingly becoming a major concern in the country. This project is a small step in our endeavour to roll out Better Management Practices among the farmers and communities of this area and ensure that the water is used in a sustainable manner”.
The project will focus on Godavari basin which extends over an area of 312,812 sq. km. In this area, water is now the most precious natural resource and communities are struggling to meet the current economic, livelihood and environmental needs for freshwater. Water shortages particularly impact on poor rural communities and, aside from drought, are largely due to highly inefficient and polluting agricultural systems. Irrigation for agriculture now accounts for 91% of the water abstracted from the Godavari River. Chemical pesticides and fertilisers play an important role in polluting water courses and causing serious health issues.
Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador and Head of Delegation of the European Commission Mr. Francisco Da Câmara Gomes said “The European Union and India share common goals and visions for the development of the region. Our association with the country has been on multiple levels and a testimony of this was the recent address of the EU parliament by Hon’ble President of India.” He added, “This project will aim to address water that is increasing becoming an issue of mainstream concern to all – in India and the EU”.
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1. About WWF-India: A challenging, constructive, science-based organization, WWF is engaged in wildlife and nature conservation in the country since 1969. Part of WWF global network, the organisation has made its presence felt through a sustained effort not only towards nature and wildlife conservation, but sensitizing people by creating awareness through capacity building and enviro-legal activism.
2. About European Commission: “The European Union is made up of 27 Member States who have decide to gradually link together their know–how, resources and destinies. Together, during a period of enlargement of 50 years, they have built a zone of stability, democracy and sustainable development whilst maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and Individual freedoms.
The European Union is committed to sharing its achievements and Its values with countries and peoples beyond its borders”.
The European Commission is the EU’s executive body.