Part IV

Protection, Preservation and Management

Key Points

  • States are obliged to protect and preserve the ecosystem of international watercourses as an extension of the general principle of equitable and reasonable utilisation and participation.
  • States are under a due diligence obligation to prevent new sources of pollution, and reduce and control existing sources consistent with the principle of equitable and reasonable utilisation and participation.
  • States must take all necessary measures to prevent the introduction of species, alien or new, that may have detrimental effects on an ecosystem of an international watercourse resulting in significant harm to other watercourse states.
  • The UN Watercourses Convention obliges states to cooperate with other states to protect and preserve the marine environment.
  • Pursuant to the Convention, states are under an obligation to enter into consultations with a view to establishing joint institutional arrangements for the management of international watercourses. In many circumstances, joint arrangements will be the most appropriate means by which to ensure the provisions of the Convention are implemented.
  • States must cooperate where necessary to regulate the flow of an international watercourse and maintain installations.
  • Articles 20- 25 collectively provide the basis by which an ecosystem approach has been reflected within the UN Watercourses Convention.

Download Fact Sheets

Scope of the Convention #2

No Significant Harm Rule

Protection and Preservation of Ecosystems


Global Water Facts

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