Water statistics and accounts serve as tools to develop and strengthen water information systems in countries. Water statistics are often developed to address specific policy questions and issues, and water accounts merge a wide range of water related statistics across sectors into one consistent framework. The International Recommendations for Water Statistics (IRWS) and SEEA-Water, a subsystem of the SEEA, are two main tools that respond to the needs of water management and provide support for integrated water resources management (IWRS). In addition, both SEEA-Water and IRWS are integrated into the Framework for the Development of Environment Statistics, which provides a flexible conceptual and statistical framework for collecting and compiling environment statistics.
SEEA-Water is an integrated approach to water monitoring, bringing together a wide range of water related statistics across sectors into one coherent information system. It serves as a conceptual framework and set of accounts which presents hydrological information alongside economic information in a consistent manner. It is fully consistent with the SEEA Central Framework and was adopted by the United Nations Committee of Experts on Environmental-Economic Accounting (UNCEEA) as an interim standard in 2007. Click here to learn more about SEEA-Water.
International Recommendations for Water Statistics
The International Recommendations for Water Statistics (IRWS) provides agreed definitions and classifications of water data to help develop and strengthen water information systems and IWRS in countries. IRWS was adopted by the United Nations Statistical Commission (UNSC) at its 41st session in 2010. The recommendations contain guidelines on the collection, compilation and dissemination of water statistics and recognize the need to improve basic water data. The IRWS is completely aligned with SEEA-Water and provides inputs for SEEA-Water accounts. IRWS also includes an agreed list of data items for deriving indicators within a coherent conceptual framework.
Guidelines for the Compilation of Water Accounts and Statistics
The Guidelines for the Compilation of Water Accounts and Statistics (draft) serves as a practical guidance document on how to compile data from different sources for SEEA-Water and how to derive indicators on water for international comparisons. The guidelines provide country experts and trainers with a comprehensive set of materials based on SEEA-Water, the SEEA Central Framework and IRWS, enabling them to develop an integrated monitoring system for water policies.