Integrated Resource Management in Asian Cities: the Urban Nexus discussed at World Urban Forum 9

On 8 February 2018, a session titled "Catalysing the New Urban Agenda by Integrating Resources and Collaborative Governance” took place as a sidebar to the World Urban Forum 9 (WUF9) at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.  The discussion was held in the context of the project “Integrated Resource Management in Asian Cities: the Urban Nexus”.

Ruth Erlbeck, the Urban Nexus Project Director, started the session with an overview of the natural resource situation in the Asia and the Pacific region and an introduction to how the Urban Nexus project is based on the vision of a circular economy and addresses the growing resource scarcity. It was followed by a panel discussion on local and national experiences with implementation of urban nexus projects aligned with the New Urban Agenda as a tool to achieve sustainable development and climate goals. The panel consisted of Urban Nexus project partners, Emani Kumar, Deputy Secretary General of ICLEI and Director of ICLEI South/South East Asia, the Vice Mayor of Chiang Mai, the Chief Resilience Officer of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration, and the Head of Green Area and Recreation Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning under the Thai Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.

The panel shared the lessons learned on developing cross-sectoral infrastructure projects and promoting collaborative governance.  The discussion also included the urban nexus concept and well-documented practical solutions such as technical solutions for waste water management and the rehabilitation of Mae Kha Canal, energy efficiency in the health care centre, efficient pump operation, and innovative waste water collection.

WUF9, held from 7-13 February 2018, is a non-legislative technical forum that brought together thousands of regional, national and local government leaders, high-level representatives, and experts from different organisations and institutions to support urban stakeholders. It aims to achieve the transformative commitments made in the New Urban Agenda (NUA) approved in Quito in October 2016 and to ensure compatibility and a clear relation of this agenda with the 2030 Agenda’s Sustainable Development Goals. 

The Urban Nexus Project is implemented in cooperation with UN-ESCAP as Political Partner, and ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability as Implementation Partner. The Project assists 12 cities in seven countries in Asia - China, India, Indonesia, Mongolia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam - with adopting a nexus approach, developing cross-sectoral infrastructure projects and building institutional and technical capacity for integrated natural resource management.

“The Urban Nexus is an action-oriented principle guiding us towards the circular economy.” Ruth Erlbeck, GIZ’s Project Director

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