Explanation of Position on a Resolution on Water for Sustainable Development

Courtney R. Nemroff
Acting U.S. Representative for Economic and Social Affairs
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York, New York
November 24, 2020


Thank you, Mr. Chair.

The United States appreciates the outstanding work of the co-facilitators – Tajikistan and the Netherlands – and is happy to co-sponsor this resolution, which lays out the modalities for the 2023 conference. We also appreciate the efforts of the co-hosts to ensure the conference will be open to participation of all members of civil society, in recognition of the important role they play in achieving results on the ground, and the valuable voice they can contribute to intergovernmental dialogues. You will find the United States and ready and willing partner to ensure this event is a success.

The United States joins consensus on this resolution with the express understanding that PP8 does not imply that States must implement obligations under human rights instruments to which they are not a party. The United States is not a party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESR), and the rights contained therein are not justiciable in U.S. courts. In addition, we do not believe that a State’s duty to protect the right to life under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) would extend to addressing general conditions in society or nature that may eventually threaten life or prevent individuals from enjoying an adequate standard of living.

Finally, regarding references to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, the Paris Agreement, climate change, reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the characterization of technology transfer, and build back better we addressed our concerns in our General Statement delivered on November 18, 2020.

Again, our congratulations to the cosponsors.

Thank you.