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News UNESCO Launched Networks on Sustainable Water Resources Management In The Arab World

Most of the Arab countries are located in arid and semi-arid zones known for their scanty annual rainfall, very high rates of evaporation and consequently extremely insufficient renewable water resources. Sustainable management of water resources using the integrated water resources management approach, is a must as water scarcity is becoming more and more a development constraint impeding the economic growth of many countries in the region. The per capita share of renewable water resources in the Arab region is less than 10% of the worldwide average. In the Arab World, there are more than 50 million persons without access to safe drinking water and more than 90 million without access to proper sanitation. This is a big challenges for governments, donors, international organizations, and scientists to  achieve the MDG and targets on water and sanitation   by year 2015.

UNESCO through it regional office for Arab States in Cairo has been active in launching and operating 3 water networks to promote sustainable and integrated water management through research, capacity building and transfer of relevant knowledge. These networks are:

1.    The Arab Network on Wadi Hydrology which is coordinated by ACSAD, Syria. This network promotes the concept of integrated water resources management in arid;
2.    The Arab Network on Groundwater Protection which is coordinated by the Groundwater Research Institute in Egypt;  and
3.    The Arab Network on Water Use Ethics which is coordinated by the regional Center for water use ethics in Egypt. This network focuses on ethical  issues related to water interactions with society, culture, and other stakeholders.   

Its strategy is to consolidate efforts of various national, regional and international agencies in these areas to address these themes. Human resources development and capacity building has been a prime objective of UCO activities. UCO is actively  following the UNESCO  approach of result based management in all its activities.

Contact information Dr. Radwan Al-Weshah, Regional Advisor for Water Sciences & FRIEND/Nile Project Director: UNESCO Cairo Office (email:;
Phone: +202-27945599 / 27943036 ; Fax: +202- 27945296, Mobile: +20-10-1777800
News type Inbrief
File link n/a
Source of information Dr. Radwan Al-Weshah, Regional Advisor for Water Sciences & FRIEND/Nile Project Director
Geographical coverage Egypt
News date 24/09/2007
Working language(s) ENGLISH