Global Water Partnership Tanzania (GWPTZ) is the national arm of Global Water Partnership Organization (GWPO) which is a worldwide intergovernmental and multi-stakeholder knowledge management action network, and a partnership for sustainable management and development of water resources. The network spans in 13 regions covering 158 countries. The global secretariat is in Stockholm, Sweden. More information on global initiatives can be accessed through www.gwp.org while all initiatives in Southern Africa region can be found at www.gwpsaf.org.
The partnership's main objective is to promote partnerships in implementing integrated water resources management, sanitation and hygiene in the country as a means to foster equitable and efficient management and sustainable utilization of water resources for economic growth and human security. Read more on the vision of the partnership.
GWPTZ is a registered NGO under NGO Act No. 24 of 2002 in Tanzania. The main objective of GWPTZ is to support the Government by promoting partnerships in implementing water resources management in the country as a means to foster equitable and efficient management and sustainable utilization of water resources for economic growth, environmental integrity and human security. GWPTZ is knowledge management entity focusing on seven strategic thematic areas in addressing water security in Tanzania.
The GWPO, established in 1996, is an international intergovernmental organization created to foster an integrated approach to water resources management. Its vision is for a water secure world. GWP offers practical advice for sustainably managing water resources. It operates as a network, open to all organizations, including government institutions, agencies of the United Nations, bi-and multi-lateral development banks, professional associations, research institutions, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector. Global Water Partnership Tanzania thrives in the mandate of providing knowledge leadership and a multi stakeholder’s platform for information sharing and exchange in water resources management as well as building and strengthening capacity in water resources management. GWPTZ has the technical expertise and convening power to bring together diverse stakeholders who can contribute to the social and economic change processes that help bring the vision of a water secure Tanzania closer to reality. As such, like its global partner - GWPO, GWPTZ perceives that one of its most important tasks is in Capacity Building and Knowledge Management.
GWPTZ stresses the need for innovative and multi-sectoral approaches in addressing the manifold threats and opportunities relating to sustainable water resource management in the context of climate change, rapid urbanization, and growing inequalities. With this in mind, knowledge generation and communication continues to be a central part of GWPTZ. Knowledge and new tools are needed to support policy development and decision making processes to enable effective and sustainable management of water resources. We believe that knowledge can stimulate behavioral change towards a new ‘water culture’.
GWPTZ collaborates with strategic partners in various fronts. One of the main strategic partner is the Ministry of Water (MoW) of which has formalized working relationship through a Memorandum of Understanding which clearly spells out various areas of collaboration.
In view of the issues and challenges in water resources management, it is clear that integrated water resources management is needed to ensure that water does not become a constraint to national development. This calls for a refocused vision i.e “A country where there is equitable and sustainable use and management of water resources for socio-economic development, and for maintenance of the environment".
Climate change has the potential to aggravate the prevailing challenges in water resources leading to increased vulnerability of communities to the impacts of Climate Change. Climate change has the potential of affecting key sectors of the economy especially Agriculture, Water, Energy, Health, Livestock, Tourism, Fisheries and Forestry.
Sustainable growth implies, importantly, that economic growth and human development is de-coupled from negative environmental impact. Such impacts leads to degradation of ecosystems which ultimately affects the provisioning of ecosystem goods and services and intuitively key economic activities. Our societies must keep sustaining and improving ecosystem-based productive functions, services and livelihoods, and address these from a holistic perspective from ‘source to sea’.
The present population in Tanzania is estimated at about 49 million, of which 76% live in the rural areas. The projected population in the year 2025 is estimated to double, with 60% living in the rural areas. The growth in population will have a significant impact on domestic water supply and in sanitation and sewerage services if measures are not taken. Presently water services coverage for municipal and industrial water supply is 73% and for rural water supply is 50%. This coverage in the provision of safe water is undesirably low. In many areas of the dry central part of the country, water is a scarce and precious commodity such that even water for personal hygiene cannot easily be found. The people, especially women and children, walk long distances to fetch water. The national economy suffers because of inadequate water supplies to the urban and rural population.
Water and energy are closely interdependent and interlinked. Unfortunately, they rely on vastly different institutional frameworks, policy settings and governance structures. The energy sector is to a large extent market-based, run and managed by private companies acting and responding to national and global markets. The water sector on the other hand is dominated by public, small utilities acting within regulated markets, at the confines of service delivery, at local and municipal levels.
While water is needed for almost all forms of energy production, such as cooling, biofuels and hydropower, energy is an important component in the extraction, treatment and transportation of water. Restraints in one of the resources will often affect the other. Therefore, there is an increasing recognition of the importance to understand the energy-water linkages and strengthen collaboration between the two sectors. Without sustainable energy and water management we cannot satisfy basic human needs, produce food for a growing population and achieve sustainable growth.
Tanzania is riparian to transboundary water resources with neighbouring countries. These water bodies include Lakes Victoria, Tanganyika, Nyasa, Chala and Jipe, as well as Kagera, Mara, Umba and Songwe Rivers. Each of these water bodies exhibit unique characteristics and a complex range of water management and development issues and challenges. These challenges include environmental management issues such as water pollution, biodiversity conservation, wetlands and catchment degradation, fisheries management and water hyacinth control. Others are river basin development for irrigation, domestic and livestock water supply, and for hydropower production. There are also issues regarding international border stabilization, river control and regulation, and inter-basin water transfers. In order to make effective utilization of transboundary water resources efforts have to be directed at assessing the needs of Tanzania through development of national plans and promotion of transboundary cooperation and integration with riparian states.