Background Webex Invitation
More than 4% of the world's population lives in the Middle East region, where the demand for water exceeds the supply. Middle East countries share a lack of water resources and poor water management. The water shortage has become an increasingly difficult problem to manage, and the imbalance between supply and demand, along with persisting issues such as climate change and exponential population growth, has made reflecting on water reuse a necessary method for conserving water.
Water conservation through WASH (Water, sanitation and hygiene) schemes is a critical element which includes policies, strategies and activities that are made to sustainably manage the natural resource of fresh water, to protect the water environment, and to meet current and future human demand.
This webex provided listeners with some key issues to think about when reflecting on water scarcity issues specifically in the Middle East.
1) Towards a Secure Arab Water Future: Challenges and Opportunities - Dr. Hussein El-Atfy, Secretary General of the Arab Water Council, presented on some of the major water challenges facing the region, highlighted some succesful solutions and summarized his view on a way to move forward together.
2) Water Accounting +: A tool for water scarcity management - Dr. Poolad Karimi, lecturer/ Researcher at UNESCO-IHE, presented on the need for more accurate and reliable data and presented the Water Accounting + tool that uses satellite data to help track water net consumption and to assist policy makers, governments and implementers in making informed decisions about water use.
3) Water Scarcity: World Vision's Response - Dr. Marielle Snel, Middle East Regional WASH Advisor for World Vision, presented on some of the practical solutions World Vision is using to combat the water scarcity crisis.
Note: the webex took place during the Arab Water Week