Sustainable Development Goals - 17 Goals to Transform our World

Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

Indicator 6.6.1: Change in the extent of water-related ecosystems over time

Change in the extent of water-related ecosystems over time

This table provides metadata for the actual indicator available from US statistics closest to the corresponding global SDG indicator. Please note that even when the global SDG indicator is fully available from US statistics, this table should be consulted for information on national methodology and other US-specific metadata information.

Actual indicator available
Actual indicator available - description
Date of national source publication
Method of computation It is proposed to estimate percentage change in each major ecosystem present in a country, and the indicator will enable Member States to report on those water-related ecosystems that are important to them. Wetland extent is computed through the existing Living Planet Index methodology for data collection and analysis ( It consists of a number of stages including harvesting of time series data, codification and database entry, aggregation into sub-indices to reduce sampling bias, and further aggregation to create subglobal (ecologically and regionally specific) and global indices. The methodology is flexible to incorporating improving sources of information and data, for a more comprehensive assessment of trends. The structure of the indicator can be designed to align with the SEEA Water accounts and estimate percentage change in Natural Water Capital available to society based on a) Mean Annual Water Availability; b) Mean Annual Water Withdrawals; c) Environmental Water requirements Aquastat (FAO); GEMS Water for national data (UNEP).
Scheduled update by national source
U.S. method of computation
Comments and limitations
Date metadata updated
Disaggregation geography
Unit of measurement
Disaggregation categories
International and national references
Time period
Scheduled update by SDG team

This table provides information on metadata for SDG indicators as defined by the UN Statistical Commission. Complete global metadata is provided by the UN Statistics Division.

Indicator name Change in the extent of water-related ecosystems over time
Target name By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes.
Global indicator description Percentage of change in water-related ecosystems over time (% change/year). The indicator would track changes over time in the extent of wetlands, forests and drylands, and in the minimum flows of rivers, volumes of freshwater in lakes and dams, and the groundwater table. The Ramsar Convention broad definition of "wetland" is used, which includes rivers and lakes, enabling three of the biome types mentioned in the target to be assessed - wetlands, rivers, lakes - plus other wetland types.
UN designated tier 2
UN custodial agency UNEP (Partnering Agencies: UN-Water, IUCN, Ramsar)
Link to UN metadata Link opens in a new window
Agency Staff Name
Agency Survey Dataset
Link to data source

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