Budapest, November 28 (MTI) – Water, the most endangered resource, should be the focal issue in political thinking and action, President János Áder said in his keynote speech to the Budapest World Summit which opened on Monday.
Without sufficient water there will not be enough food, no further industrial development or sustainable urbanisation, Áder said, adding that “water is also a safeguard for peace and security”.
Áder warned that the global population growth and increased demand for food will increase water consumption by 30 percent by 2030. The industry will need at least 50 percent more water by 2050, he added. He also said that finding solutions to water management problems was crucial for meeting sustainable development goals. He urged that the best solutions should be collated and adopted in other countries. More and more experimental programs must be launched with appropriate financing in place, he said.
Agriculture accounts for 70 percent of global water consumption, but only 15 percent of the planet’s arable land has irrigation farming. That area, however, produces 40 percent of the total yield, Áder noted.
Concerning climate change, Áder said that the resulting water shortage impacts food production, such as grain or corn, which could be impaired by as much as 50 percent. Water shortage may also lead to the decline of urban cultures, he added.
Quoting David Attenborough, Áder called for radical changes in society, in the economy and in politics in the interest of life on Earth in the future.
At a press conference on the sidelines of the conference, Áder said: “If we lose the battle of water, we will also be defeated on the climate front”. He insisted that the complete water management system should be reconsidered, involving changes to its institutions, technologies and financing.
Peter Thomson, president of the United Nations General Assembly, said the world is heading for an unsustainable situation. Current tendencies suggest a global warming of 3-4 degrees Celsius rather than 1.5-2 Celsius as outlined in the Paris Agreement, making the survival of human civilisation doubtful, he added. Thomson urged efforts to implement the targets of the Paris Agreement, without which, he said, the future of mankind was in jeopardy.
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