David Grey delivers keynote at McMaster University water forum

Water security is an increasing global concern as demand for fresh water increases and climate change makes supplies even more unpredictable.

The water security challenge was discussed at McMaster University on 8 April at the Philomathia Water Forum: 21st Century Water Security Challenges for Society and Science.

The event featured two lively discussion panels with topics spanning science, policy, health, innovation and technology, as well as a keynote address from Oxford’s David Grey.

The initiative was organised by Dustin Garrick, Assistant Professor Philomathia Chair in Water Policy at McMaster University. Garrick was previously a research fellow at Oxford and is now leading an interdisciplinary water research network at McMaster which was launched at the event.

“There are several mega-trends in society related to population growth, urbanisation and climate change which make managing existing water more challenging,” Garrick said in an interview with Radio Canada International. “The issue is how to manage that small amount of water that is available as freshwater, for society and society’s evolving needs.”

Garrick is working closely with Oxford colleagues on the OECD/Global Water Partnership Task Force on Water Security and Sustainable Growth, co-chaired by Professors David Grey and Jim Hall. The Task Force aims to build for case for global action to address water-related risks by quantifying the impacts of water insecurity and documenting the evidence of the benefits of strengthening water security.

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