We don’t know enough about water. We depend on freshwater resources every day, but the impacts of our actions, the current status of ecosystem health, and the role of climate change are rarely measured or available in a format most people can understand. This knowledge gap allows decisions about water management to be made without adequate information, behind closed doors, and often at the expense of the basin’s health and most vulnerable communities.
But when information about basin health is synthesized and delivered via a public platform, people are empowered and can take action.
Basin report cards provide that platform. Developed from the ground-up and rooted in science, report cards identify what is most important to the diverse water users in a given basin, create a common understanding of the basin’s health, and foster a shared vision for its future. Armed with information that anyone can understand, these stakeholders can then advocate for decisions that maintain or improve their freshwater resources—and all of the benefits these resources provide.
WWF and the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Sciences (UMCES) seek to empower stakeholders around the world to develop and effectively use credible, locally owned report cards in their basins, fostering sustainable water management across basins around the world.