The Arab Water Council honored leading Arab water ministers and officials at a special event held for World Water Day in Cairo on 20 March 2010.
The event had two themes: "Towards a Common Arab Water Security Policy" and "Clean Water for a Healthy World".
His Royal Highness Prince Khaled Bin Sultan Bin Abdulaziz, chairman of the PSIPW Prize council, was at the forefront of those who were honoured at the event.
Dr. Abdulmalek Al Alsheikh received the award on his behalf from the chairman of the Arab Water Council, Egypt's former water minister Dr. Muhammad Abu Zeid.
Dr. Abdulmalek Al Alsheikh is the general secretary of the Prince Sultan Bin Abdulaziz International Prize for Water and the Director of the King Fahd Project for Rain and Runoff Water Harvesting and Storage. Dr. Al Alsheikh delivered the acceptance speech on behalf of His Royal Highness Prince Khaled Bin Sultan Bin Abdulaziz. Some highlights of this speech are as follows:
"It should be clear to all of us that the world's fate is bound to that of water. The world's problems start with water, the world's failures are partly caused by water issues, and most of the world's conflicts are about the control of water. Our weal and woe result from water. Growth and development depend on its availability. Peace and war hinge upon it. Water is both an impetus for – and a challenge to – global security. Indeed, water has become one of the determining factors of a nation's power, side-by-side with its economic, military, diplomatic, social, and scientific strengths. God speaks truly when he says: "And we made from water every living thing.
"In past water events, I have always warned against the danger of water-related conflicts. I have asked if the next war is going to be a "water war" – or if we should prevent water from becoming a basis for contention and bloodshed. If we use and share water resources in a wise and just manner, water can become an impetus for international cooperation and world peace.
"Our world's water situation presents us with a bleak picture, warning us of the dangers looming in our future. Is there any hope? Yes, there is hope – rising from ourselves, from our strength and determination. Human beings are the consumers, the wasters, the prudent guides, the innovators, the researchers, and the decision-makers. They are the ones who will implement the proposed five-phase plan, which is: to increase water awareness, to achieve a rational political will, to follow a resolute program of integrated water management, to adopt fair global water governance, and to harness technology in the service of development goals.
"In this vein, the Prince Sultan Bin Abdulaziz International Prize for Water calls upon researchers, scientists, research centres, and universities to commit their energies to study and analysis, to being original and innovative, to knowledge enrichment, and to finding unconventional solutions. In this way, we might achieve our humanitarian hope and save our planet from what plagues it of water scarcity, pollution, desertification, drought, an increasingly warming climate, coastal depletion, the decline of coastal cities, and water scarcity in numerous countries. We are in this together, we will either save ourselves or we shall all perish."