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The Human Right to Water, Water Grabbing and Protection of Rivers

Online-Seminar of the WG Water of the German Forum Environment and Development in Cooperation with the European Water Forum and other Partners

The Human Right to Water, Water Grabbing and Protection of Rivers

Tuesday, 22nd February 2022 – from 14h to 16h CET Online


The sustainable use and equitable distribution of water is one of the most urgent problems of our time. For billions of people, the right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation is still an unfulfilled human right. At the same time, scarce freshwater resources and their associated ecosystems are beingoverexploited, polluted and damaged all over the world.

Whether water will still be sufficiently available and drinkable in the future, and who will have access to it, depends more than ever on political decisions around water use. However, the influential forums of international water policy are dominated by multinational water corporations and their lobby groups. Instead of human rights-based approaches and distribution issues, technological and market-based solutions are at the centre of the debates there.

Since 2003, the Alternative World Water Forums have been established as exchange platforms for civil society discussions and responses on the human right to water and sanitation and are organized parallel to the World Water Forums.

We will discuss the human rights-based focus of the alternative World Water Forum and the state of preparations with the co-organising European Water Movement.

Other contributors will present the threat to our river ecosystems from dam projects for hydropower and for irrigation to intensify agriculture, using examples from Amazonia and Portugal. 

However, water grabbing is also taking place on our doorstep. The planned location of Tesla production in the immediate surrounding of Berlin raises fundamental questions about water availability and drinking water security, which we will discuss with the Berlin-Brandenburg Water Panel.

We cordially invite you and your colleagues to attend the seminar. Details on the programme and registration can be found below.



You can register for the event here: 


The registration closes two days before the beginning of the event.

This event will be held in English using the Zoom conference application

With your registration you agree to the recording and distribution of the seminars.



Part 1

The Human Right to Water – What are the aspects emphasized by the Alternative World Water Forum (in French: Forum Alternatif Mondial de l'Eau FAME)

Contributions from the European Water Movement and from FIAN


Part 2

How dams destroy rivers and habitats

Contributions from GegenStrömung and Geota (Pt)


Part 3

Tesla in Berlin - danger for drinking water?

Contribution from Berliner Wassertisch


Each with discussion on

Germany's role in protecting access to water here and worldwide


Moderation: Michael Bender (Living Rivers Foundation) and Leonie Hilmers (AöW) 

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