Natural Resources and Ecosystem Services

World Water Week 2018 (WWW2018)
Special Session at the World Water Week 2018, Stockholm:
Groundwater-based natural infrastructure (GBNI) solutions: The missing link to resilience?

IGES co-organised a special session on ‘Groundwater-based natural infrastructure (GBNI) solutions: The missing link to resilience?’ in collaboration with the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Daugherty Water for Food Institute, (DWFI), International Groundwater Resources Assessment Centre (IGRAC), and Center for Advanced Water Research (CAWR) at World Water Week 2018 at Stockholm, Sweden. This year WWW focus was on ‘water, ecosystems and human development’ and the session aligns well with the 2018 World Water Day theme on “nature-based solutions”.

In the session, concrete cases of GBNI from Asia (Japan, India), Australia, Africa (Ethiopia) and North America (USA) were presented by the panellists. The panellists showcased the use of urban wetlands, green roads, floodwater retention ponds, rice fields and rehabilitated canals/rivers course for groundwater recharge. IGES presented a case of groundwater recharge through rice fields in Kumamoto, Japan. In Kumamoto, an offsetting scheme, which was agreed between the major groundwater users (city water supply, private sectors) and rice farmers, to use rice field as recharge structures by impounding the rice fields for a specified period has been operational since 2004 under the concept of payment for ecosystem services. The case of Kumamoto, along with about 20 GBNI cases prepared by GRIPP (Groundwater Solutions for Policy and Practice) partners, is featured in a dedicated GBNI webpage. The GBNI page was launched just before the WWW.

In the session, panellists stressed the need to promote GBNI as the most practical and useful approach of managed aquifer recharge. They further highlighted various benefits of GBNI for groundwater recharge as a sustainable and distributed water supply solution and as a strategic reserve for climate change adaptation, drought mitigation, and for building resilience. The need to establish an institutional and policy framework is considered vital for the rapid adoption of GBNI cases on the ground. The session was attended by over 50 participants.

Link to session summary published through GRIPP
Link to GBNI page
Link to GBNI case in Kumamoto

Date 28 August 2018
Venue City Conference Center Stockholm Access
Language English
Number of participants Approx. 50
Related Link

Photo credit: Samurdhi Ranasinghe/IWMI.

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