From 22-24 March 2023, 10,000 people gathered in New York for the UN Water Conference, hosted by the Netherlands and Tajikistan, to scale up action to address the water crisis and achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6 on clean water and sanitation.
The International Network of Mountain Indigenous Peoples (INMIP), IIED and the Mountain Partnership secretariat organised a side event on ‘Protecting and restoring critical water related ecosystems in mountains: the role of Indigenous Peoples and biocultural territories’.
This was one of the few events that centred on the knowledge and solutions of Indigenous Peoples in a conference dominated by high-level officials, big corporations and NGOs. Quechua communities in the Potato Park in Peru presented directly to the side event audience via Zoom from high altitude sacred lakes and rivers, in the Potato Park and the Chalakuy (barter) Park.
These collectively-governed Indigenous biocultural territories in the high Andes of Peru play a vital role in protecting and restoring water resources and related ecosystems for the city of Cusco.
- Summary of the side event: Protecting and restoring critical water-related ecosystems in mountains: the role of Indigenous Peoples and biocultural territories (PDF)
- Press release: Historic UN conference marks watershed moment to tackle global water crisis and ensure water-secure future (PDF)
- Advancing sustainable mountain development and protecting the “water towers” of the world, Mountain Partnership secretariat