Agricultural Water Management Spotlighted at UN Water Conference

March 28, 2023

Last Thursday in New York at the UN Water Conference, Solutions from the Land (SfL) led a highly successful side event at the Nature Hub that interjected agricultural expertise and stimulated collaborative conversation on how farmers, ranchers, foresters and the entire agricultural value chain are leading the way in enhancing water management and what they need to take what they are doing to the next level.

Collaborating co-organizers of the event included: the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research, Agricultural Drainage Management Coalition, Cargill, ComNet Mekong, Ducks Unlimited, General Mills, Global Water Partnership, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), Irrigation Association, Netafim, Nutrien, The Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute, The Nature Conservancy, Water Policy Group and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

SfL senior advisor Jerry Hatfield keynoted and moderated the 75-minute event, and Jocelyn Anderson, a SfL Farmer Envoy, offered a farmer’s perspective on the important role that agriculture water management plays in supporting SDG attainment.

“We are pleased to report that the event was well attended and widely lauded” said SfL President Ernie Shea. “Panel members were closely aligned around the need to prioritize ag water management research and focus more attention on technical assistance and enabling policies to help producers improve water management practices. Agriculture water management in its many dimensions, is an unappreciated and underutilized SDG solution pathway, and we are confident that our intervention in the conference will help reorient UN system thinking about agriculture in general and water more specifically”.

The event run of show was as follows:

  • Welcome and keynote remarks on climate/water nexus – Dr. Jerry Hatfield
  • Case Study Panel Study
    • NORTH AMERICA & GLOBAL: Anca Mataoanu, Global Sustainability Lead for Financial Services, Cargill
  • GLOBAL: John Farner, Chief Sustainability Officer, Netafim
    • GLOBAL: Saswati Bora, Global Director, Regenerative Food Systems, The Nature Conservancy)
  • Moderated panel discussion of the following:1) barriers that have limited focus on agricultural water management as a keystone set of strategies for advancing SDG’s beyond water scarcity and quality concerns; and 2) ways to coalesce lessons learned from global “showcase studies” to support broader adoption and progress toward SDGs.
  • PRODUCER: Jocelyn Anderson, Farmer Envoy, Solutions from the land.
  • INDUSTRY: Mike Nemeth, Senior Advisor, Agricultural and Environmental Sustainability Corporate Sustainability and Stakeholder Relations, Nutrien
  • NGO: Adam Putnam, CEO, Ducks Unlimited

The program for the event can be accessed at UN Water Conference Side Event Application 01192023 – Final and an audio recording is available at UN Water Conference Audio. The slides Dr. Jerry Hatfield’s used in his keynote address can be viewed at keynote slides can be viewed at JHatfield_UN-Water Conference2023.

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For additional information, contact Dr. Jerry Hatfield, SfL Senior Adviser at 515-509-5331 or jerryhatfield67@gmail.com; or Ernie Shea, president of Solutions from the Land, at 410-952-0123 or eshea@solutionsfromtheland.org.

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