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Lecture by Henk Ovink: 'Water as leverage, from risks to rewards for the 2030 Agenda'

Henk Ovink will present how we can seize the opportunity, and turn the current water crisis into a world of opportunities, investing in people, in our planet rather than purely in infrastructure.

Henk Ovink is Special Envoy for International Water Affairs for the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Sherpa of the UN World Bank High Level Panel on Water. In this role, he has advised and supported governments, policy makers and scientists worldwide in adapting coastal areas to climate change. He was a part of Barack Obama’s ‘Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Taskforce’ and could be considered the world’s first real water ambassador.

 

What will he talk about?

Henk Ovink will present how we can seize the opportunity, and turn the current water crisis into a world of opportunities, investing in people, in our planet rather than purely in infrastructure. This will be necessary, as the climate crisis really also is a water crisis. Nine in ten natural disasters are water-related. Between 1995 and 2015, wind and water caused 1,700 billion dollars’ worth of damage worldwide, according to UN estimates. But water is also a resource: without water, no energy and no food. Too much water and increasing “extremes” go hand in hand with far too little water; periods of drought align with flows of refugees and conflicts. The choice between prevention and repair is false, as both are essential. We need to prepare boldly, comprehensibly and inclusive for tomorrow’s extremes.

The lecture will be followed by a debate with:

Prof. Patrick Willems (KULeuven)

Cathy Berx (Governor Antwerp Province)

Bernard De Potter (Flanders Environment Agency VMM)

Chris Danckaerts (De Vlaamse Waterweg nv)

Dirk Fransaer (VITO)

Moderator: Prof. Patrick Meire (UAntwerpen)

Practical information

Where: UAntwerpen, Hof Van Liere. Frederik De Tassiszaal. (How to get there?)

When: February 12, 2019, from 16:00 to 18:00

Participation is free, but registration is mandatory.

 

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