ICLEI's Watershed Agenda
Title Watershed Agenda
Audience All Governments and Stakeholders within a Watershed Area.
  • Establish a regional stakeholder forum to develop a planning and management framework with which to achieve locally developed water management targets within a designated watershed area.
  • Create a watershed management strategy for the designated watershed area.

What is it?

The Watershed Agenda is a process by which local governments can become more involved in regional watershed management discussions. It supports local governments in creating partnerships and improving dialogue between members of a common "designated" watershed area. Where watershed planning discussions are already underway, the municipality is encouraged to focus on improving communication about water-related issues between the municipalities that are located in the "designated" watershed area.

How will it benefit local governments?

Water resources are most effectively managed at the watershed level. Improving the dialogue between members of a common "watershed address" will have long-term benefits to the municipality in terms of a more secure water supply and reduced water pollution.


Urban water issues do not operate in a vacuum. In order to identify long-term solutions to water management problems, water issues are most effectively confronted at the watershed, or catchment, level. Municipalities are dependent on their local watershed area to supply their water and sanitation needs. To protect their access to high quality water in perpetuity, they need to be involved in regional watershed planning initiatives.

The ultimate solution to local water resource problems requires coordinated efforts across a watershed or catchment area, which may extend beyond the municipal jurisdiction. To participate in this agenda's activities, the municipality will therefore be required to join together with other relevant jurisdictions in a watershed planning forum.

The involvement of other municipalities within the watershed area is a key aspect of this agenda's activities. In areas where larger scale regional watershed planning activities are already underway, an intermunicipal forum is one way in which the city can provide value-added support to this process.

The creation of a watershed management strategy for the locally defined watershed area is the second action to be achieved. Local awareness and application of the concept of integrated water resources management will influence this strategy.

Watershed Agenda activities include:

  • a comprehensive assessment of issues in the watershed, and their relation to other developmental conditions and trends;
  • a review of policies and investments relative to these conditions, and the approval of a common policy and set of objectives for the watershed;
  • ongoing monitoring and performance evaluation.
  Source: ICLEI. Visit the ICLEI's homepage for more information: http://www.iclei.org/
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Contact: Hari Srinivas - hsrinivas@gdrc.org