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LIFE SUPPORT MECHANISMS
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The conservation of groundwater flow requires special measures during and after the construction of underground structures. With respect to groundwater flow conservation, there is a need to a new concept and design of underground space utilization.

The development of international water laws is a necessity, particularly in the field of transboundary aquifers. This should be achieved through a multidisciplinary approach involving lawyers and other water professi- onals...

Key issues: All people should have access to relevant and understandable water information allowing them to make informed water decisions and to participate meaningfully in building water management. Effective, transparent, and accountable water governance is ultimately built upon a foundation of credible, timely, and relevant information.

Inland water eco-systems support exceptional biodiversity that is not only of interest to conservationists but also provides a wide range of benefits to people. One of the major bottlenecks in developing conservation strategies for freshwater species is a lack of basic information on species distributions and their threatened status.

Actions: Collaborative efforts to acquire data, exchange lessons learned, and to develop knowledge partnerships are needed to fill information gaps hindering sustainable water management and to empower more effective water institutions. These efforts and partnerships will incorporate advancing information technologies, as well as traditional and indigenous knowledge bases.

...The species survival commission and its partners have initiated a global programme of biodiversity assessments that will collate existing information to map species distributions and assess their threatened status. Other developed tools are the habitat suitability models and habitat management tools for riverine habitats directive species using river habitat survey and river invertebrate prediction and classification system software to assess the biological quality of rivers ...

Recommendations: ... Acknowledge the vital role of publicly accessible and understandable water information in efforts to increase transparency and accountability, and in combating corruption in water-related decision-making development. Support and promote problem-based research and assessment efforts by allocating needed funds and supporting information-based activities and capacity building.

Key issues: The short and long-term United Nations visions to halving water and sanitation deficits requires a broader range of investments to produce a water-secure world. An increase in government funding on the scale required is uncertain. Much of the funding challenge thus rests with water utilities themselves.

Actions: The Virtual Water Forum brought out the importance of local self-help and private enterprise in water provision, especially in groundwater development and operation, where better cost-recovery is vital for the long-term financial health of the sector.

Recommendation: Governments should press hard for reforms in their water authorities and relax any unnecessary limitations on the powers and financial freedoms to improve their efficiency and flexibility. Combining the skills and funding of governments, donors, NGOs and users themselves should create solid partnerships to close the services deficits and simulate other flows.

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