WastingWater in Saudi Arabia
WastingWater in Saudi Arabia
SaudiArabia, just like most countries in the Middle East, has latelyexperienced some environmental concerns posing a threat to theirwater reservoirs. Water resources are on a severe declineparticularly to the millions of people who already cannot affordaccess to sanitary water. The situation is posing a significantthreat to the lives of millions of people living in Saudi Arabia. Itis, therefore, important that the masses be encouraged to conservethe already scarce water for the current and future generations. Tocarry out water conservation awareness campaigns will require theefforts of all players in the field of environmental protection. Thedeterioration of water supplies is a threat to both economic growthand national security since people may force to move to alreadycrowded cities in search of this precious commodity. With the loomingwater shortages as predicted by the weathermen, it is important tostart a conversation on how to conserve water.
TheKingdom of Saudi Arabia is a semi-arid region. It means that theenvironmental conditions limit water resources in arid and semi-aridareas. The major contributors to the water scarcity in Saudi Arabiaincludes Growth of the population which has caused an upwardpressure in the demand for water thereby straining the watersupplies. The development of economic regions in the country is alsoa possible cause of water scarcity since these projects take in a lotof water leaving tiny for other uses. Climate change that has led toglobal warming has to a major extent contributed to the problems ofwater shortage in the Middle East. These problems ravaging the MiddleEast also occur in Saudi Arabia (Al-Ibrahim, 1991).
SinceSaudi is a semi-arid country with no lakes and rivers that canprovide fresh water, it, therefore, means that the people of Saudionly get water from conventional water resources like the groundwater and the rains. However, this rain is not reliable, which meansthat the country’s agricultural sector depends on irrigation. Theyuse water from the ground for irrigation and the land for agricultureadding the pressure for to the already scarce water supply. Thetraditional methods used for irrigation of such agricultural fields’leads to massive water wastage thus water scarcity. Desertificationas an environmental problem, which has also presented large effectsto water resources. Unsustainable agricultural practices such asovergrazing contribute to this desertification.
Fromthe above cause, a huge chunk of water shortage is because of humanfactors. Moreover, there is poor awareness of how to optimally useand save water from the masses in general. Therefore, the first stepin solving the problem of water shortage in Saudi will be to carryout public awareness companies on the importance of waterconservation. It will involve giving those feasible solutions thatthey can result to ensure the protection of the available waterresources and the optimal use of available water supplies.
Thecurrent situation demands the need and swift action of adopting waterdemand management vis a vis the conservation measures and programs toprotect the water resources as well as achieving a balance betweenthe availability of water and the demands. It is observable that thegovernment of Saudi and the other agencies are making significantefforts to aid water supply development and demand management toensure no wasted. It is important to put a focus on the demandmanagement of water as awareness campaigns occur (Hadadin et al.,2010).
Theagricultural sector is one of the largest and the most wastefulconsumer of water. Therefore, the campaign should focus on theplayers from this sector. The methods can maximize on the scarcewater in Saudi Arabia and to manage these demands efficiently shouldbe the priority in the awareness campaigns. Some of these methodsinclude the masses should be encouraged to avoid wasteful as well asthe less efficient uses of non-renewable water resources. Theirrigation can also be carried out waste water as opposed to thefresh water. It will channel the clean water to more demanding anddeserving sectors (Al-Zaharani, 2009).
Awarenessshould make people aware of the need to reuse and recycle. As thesehappens, the government should also invest in scientificinvestigations aimed at discovering new water fields, and this canoccur by the universities as well as other environmental and waterinstitutions.Management of drinking water that undergoes heavylosses through leakage can also occur through the implementation ofconstant and proper maintenance of the water distribution networks.Everybody should take it upon themselves to ensure that water pipesare protected to avoid leakages and breakages that result intomassive water wastage (Vedavyasan, 2000). In as much as thegovernment has a lot to do to ensure that it meets the demand forwater, it takes everybody to make sure the management of watersupplies available. Therefore, the dissemination of information onwater conservation debate to the public is important as opposed toleaving the confines of conferences and small discussion groups.Public participation is a sure way to water conservation and waterdemand management.
Al-Ibrahim,A.A., (1991). Excessive Use of Ground Water in Saudi Arabia: Impactsand Policy Options, JSTOR. Vol. 20, pp 34-37.
Al-Zaharani,K.H., (2009). Sustainable Development of Agriculture and WaterResources in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Conference of theInternational Journal of Arts and Sciences, Vol. 1, pp 23-37.
Hadadin,N. ,M. Quaqish., E. Akawwi & A. Bdour. (2010). Water Shortage inJordan- Sustainable solutions, Desalinisation. Vol 250. Pp 197-202.
Vedavyasan,C.V. (2000). Combating Water Shortages with innovative uses ofmembranes, Desalinisation. Vol 132. Pp 345-347.