Water: Crisis and Choices - ADB and Partners Conference 2010


Everyone knows that water in the Asia and Pacific region is a big multifaceted issue. There is scarcity, waste, pollution, inadequate service levels, increasing and competing demands to name a few. Causes are many as are water agencies and talk-fests. What everyone doesn't know is that there are doable solution choices and needed urgency to give water higher priority in development plans and investment.

To ensure momentum and continuity of water and sanitation developments in the Asia-Pacific up to and beyond 2015, ADB and its partners organized this "Water Crisis and Choices" conference.

At conference closing, ADB presented its draft Water Operational Framework 2011-2020 and called for credible water partnerships to consolidate the sector's knowledge and coordinate solutions.


The conference aimed to:

  • Increase awareness of water issues and solutions
  • Build stronger networks and regional cooperation to implement actions
  • Demonstrate ADB commitment to solving water issues over the next decade
  • Enhance partners engagement with ADB in helping countries meet their water agenda


Cities and Water: Solutions for Efficiency
Efficiency is the key for Asian cities to provide the water needs of their ballooning populations. Choices to decrease water losses, manage demands, improve bankable utilities, and slash energy costs to reduce climate change impacts are on the table.

  • From Loss to Profit: Structural Transformation via Reduced NRW
  • Cleaning Utility Balance Sheets: Attracting Investments
  • Energy in Water: The Case for a Smaller Footprint

Water in Food: Productivity Gains
Agricultural Asia spends 70% of its water for irrigation and food production. Yet water losses and poor farm productivity, leading to food price hikes and growing hunger, remain big concerns. Vital links among water, food, and energy will be explored.

  • Less Water, More Food: Solutions for Enhanced Productivity
  • Technologies in Irrigated Agriculture: Costs and Benefits
  • Small-Scale Irrigation: Is this the Future?

Clean Water: A Question of Quality
Concerns over Asia's diminishing freshwater supply can be addressed by stopping pollution and reusing wastewater. Choices on how to finance river and groundwater cleanups, enforce pollution legislation, and implement wastewater reuse programs will be explained and shared.

  • Legislating Clean Water: Getting the Laws to Work Better
  • Water Reuse: Scale, Technology, and Prospects
  • Clean Up Costs: Expanding Investments

Basin Level Management: A Scorecard for Asia
River basins have become more challenging to manage, with the impacts of climate change peeking in the horizon. Revisit integrated water resources management in Asia's basins, while exploring choices on expanded water capture and storage and better flood and disaster management.

  • Basin Planning and Management: An Asian Scorecard
  • Adapting to Climate Change: Risks and Resilience
  • Accessing Available Freshwater: Expanded Capture and Storage


The conference was organized by ADB and partner organizations.