The primary characteristic of ILBM is that it is not a prescriptive planning procedure. Rather, it is a compilation of lessons learned from the global experiences of lake basin management in the past, synthesized to address complex planning issues with a basin governance framework that reflects the unique features of lentic waters such as lakes and reservoirs (i.e., long retention time, complex response dynamics, and integrating the surrounding environment and human activities).
For a successful lake basin management, it is essential to fill the gaps between what has already been done, and what remains to be achieved in its application process with long-term and strong political commitment. Continuous efforts will be necessary to further expand and refine the concept of ILBM for a better future of lakes and other water bodies that are now under serious threat of degradation, particularly caused from human activities and climate change.
Six fundamental pillars for governance improvement
A management system with an appropriate organizational setup helps ensure sustainable benefits to lake basin resource users.
Policy tools must be better developed to facilitate concerted societal actions for sustainable lake basin management.
All lake basin stakeholders should participate in decision-making process for sustainable management.
Although their effect often tends to be limited in certain areas and short period of time, physical interventions, such as shoreline and wetland restoration, provision of sewerage and industrial waste-water treatment systems, afforestation, and mitigation measures for siltation control can play a significant role in improving lake environment.
Scientific and public perceptions on lake basin management can differ from case to case. Without knowledge generation and sharing, human and financial resources mobilized in lake basin management efforts may prove futile.
Financial resources should come from all basin stakeholders benefiting from both direct and indirect use of lake resources. Efforts must be made in order to develop innovative approaches for generating locally-usable funds.