Water Diplomacy

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The sales are on and after a day's successful shopping spree you return home with bags full of bargains. Now what happens to the plastic bags and wrappers thoughtlessly tossed aside? Out in the ocean floating islands of plastic waste reach hundreds of miles, and plastic bags play heavily among them… Plastics are even reaching people's lungs and dinner tables, with micro-plastics in the air, water and food having an unknown impact on their health and playing havoc with marine life. Tackling the plastics problem is a must.

A healthy world ocean is critical to our survival. Every year, World Oceans Day provides an opportunity to honour, help protect, and conserve our world’s shared ocean, which connects us all.

With the amount of harmful plastic litter in oceans and seas growing ever greater, the European Commission is proposing new EU-wide rules to target the 10 single-use plastic products most often found on Europe's beaches and seas, as well as lost and abandoned fishing gear.

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How many of us take water for granted? If we turn on the tap and no water comes out, we panic, even if there is simply no hot water but only cold water, we panic… Water is an essential building block of life. Access to water, in particular safe drinking water, is a fundamental right, yet, it is still a challenge in many parts of the world.

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On November 21, Almaty hosts a conference on the occasion of the end of the European Union’s project “Promotion dialogue for conflict prevention related to water nexus in Central Asia. Central Asia Water Nexus Cooperation (CAWECOOP)”.

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Opening the Our Ocean Conference in Malta today, EU High Representative Federica Mogherini announced EUR 560 million of EU funds for 36 concrete actions to protect and ensure the security of the world's oceans. In our globalised world, she said, 90 per cent of world trade is seaborne and millions of jobs and livelihoods depend on the oceans, which are a common good and must be managed through international cooperation. Our oceans are in danger. By 2050 they could contain more plastic than fish.

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