By Liliana Miranda Sara et al.


Chance2Sustain Thematic Report

The ‘urban water challenge’ is Janus-faced: it is as much about how to provide water (and sanitary) services to increasing urban populations as it is about how to respond to the growing risks and uncertainties of climate change, often in a context of scarce and unfair distribution of financial and human resources. The burden of failing water governance is borne mostly by the urban poor: they often receive lower quantities and qualities of water, often for higher prices, and tend to be the most exposed to water related climate change risks.

As the recently published 5th Assessment report notes ‘much of key and emerging global climate risks are concentrated in urban areas. Rapid urbanization and rapid growth of large cities in low- and middle-income countries have been accompanied by the rapid growth of highly vulnerable urban communities living in informal settlements, many of which are on land at high risk from extreme weather […]. These risks are amplified for those who live in informal settlements and in hazardous areas and either lack essential infrastructure and services or where there is inadequate provision for adaptation’(Revi, D.E. Satterthwaite et al. 2014).


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