" "limate is about much more than carbonemissions - it is about the way we live, and the way in which we takeresponsibility for the management of ourplanet. This includes water management, as water isthe medium through which many of the impacts ofclimate change will be transmitted.Half a century ago, the human population was half whatit is now. Already then, the warning signs were clearregarding the impacts of human activities on ourenvironment. However, the impacts still appeared to belocal, and limited. With the doubling in population overthe last 50 years, countries and leaders can no longeravoid the recognition that people are responsible formuch larger changes and impacts than previouslythought. Planetary systems - the carbon cycle, thewater cycle, the nitrogen cycle - are being affected.Hence we are belatedly acknowledging the need tomanage the planet as a whole, and thereby to secureour future. Whole economies, especially those whichare still closely linked to producing food from soil andsea, depend upon a stable and predictable climate.Rain or lack of rain, melting glaciers, rising seas: weneed to be concerned about the water cycle as well asthe carbon cycle. Water is the medium through whichmany of the impacts of climate change will betransmitted, as has been outlined by the 2008Technical Paper of the IPCC on Climate Change andWater. Extreme weather events and increasing climatevariability are becoming commonplace and hittingmore people when they occur. What we see is thatwater is the common thread that links together manydifferent challenges in the areas of poverty, health,food security, vulnerability to disasters and humansecurity. Water management is not only aboutdomestic water supply and sanitation, although thosetoo play a vital and life-saving role. From agriculture tohydropower, from flood protection to drought riskmanagement, much of our global productive capacity(especially in less developed economies) is at themercy of water - enough water, of the right quality, inthe right place, at the right time. A key component ofsuccessful adaptation to climate change will be ourability as a society to manage water better, in a moreholistic and integrated way. This is why the vision of the Global Water Partnershipis for a water-secure world. GWP is anintergovernmental organisation, a worldwide networkof 2,000 partner organisations in 150 countries,focused upon improving the management of waterresources in support of sustainable development. Ourorganisation is committed to supporting integratedwater resources management (IWRM), which wasrecognised as the appropriate approach to managingthis vital resource at the United Nations Conference onEnvironment and Development 1992, a decision thatwas reiterated at the World Summit on SustainableDevelopment in 2002. IWRM is an adaptive process that recognises the inter-connectedness ofdevelopment issues in order to identify a coherent setof insights that can provide a basis for concrete action. Managing water better involves many differentaspects: the wise and sustainable use of water, theequitable sharing of the benefits of its use (which isnot the same thing), and building resilience to water-related disasters including floods and drought. Givennew developments in agricultural water technologiesas well as industrial water reuse, we can now increasethe productivity of water, producing more with less. New, more sophisticated insights into watermanagement are giving rise to intensified waterrecycling, leading to industry leaders adopting zeroWATER: THE DEVELOPMENT-ADAPTATION NEXUSWATER IS THECOMMON THREADTHAT LINKS TOGETHER MANYDIFFERENT CHALLENGES106SUSTAINABLE WATERDR ANIA GROBICKI, EXECUTIVE SECRETARY, THEGLOBAL WATER PARTNERSHIP (GWP)CMain Picture: Parchedsoils due to climatechange put the focus onbetter water managmenthoto: Courtesy of Global Water Partnership?