The countries that make up the MENA region display wide diversity. One of the poorest countries in the world sits alongside two of the wealthiest, whilst the region's natural resources range from immeasurable oil and gas reserves to some of the scantiest natural endowments anywhere in the world. Yet through this diversity runs a common thread: water scarcity. Now, through the impact of human development and climate change, the water resource itself is changing,bringing new risks and increasing the vulnerability of all those dependent on water. Chris Ward and Sandra Ruckstuhl assess the increased challenges now facing the countries of the region, placing particular emphasis on water scarcity and the resultant risks to livelihoods, food security and the environment. They evaluate the risks and reality of climate change in the region, and offer an assessment of the vulnerability of agriculture and livelihoods. In a final section, they explore the options for responding to the new challenges, including policy, institutional, economic and technical measures.
, Sandra Ruckstuhl
Country of Publication:
18 December 2016
Contents Introduction: Background on the Middle East & North Africa region The countries of the region A varied set of countries * Wide structural differences and diverse natural endowments Global and regional trends Sluggish growth, poor fiscal outlook and low investor confidence * Trade and food security * Political change * Demographic trends and pressures * The effects of conflict Water in the region Water scarcity is a common thread * Demographic pressures are contributing to scarcity * Economic changes are also exacerbating scarcity * The faint but clear voice of the environment and of water's ecological services * Water scarcity and climate change * Water scarcity and the need for an integrated approach Agriculture The importance of agriculture in the Middle East & North Africa * Pressures on agriculture * Agriculture and water scarcity * Agriculture and climate change * Competition for water and the case for transfer of water out of agriculture * Agriculture and rural poverty * Perceived links between water, agriculture and food security Water and conflict PART I: CHALLENGES Chapter 1: The challenge of water and agriculture and the drivers of water scarcity Water resources and uses Water uses by sector Climate and farming systems The contribution of agriculture Food security and agricultural water management Food production and consumption in the Middle East & North Africa * Food security and insecurity * Impacts of conflict on food security * Can food insecurity drive conflict? * Links between agriculture and food security Recent trends: an agriculture already under stress Land and water use in agriculture * Productivity, technology and innovation * Market orientation * Policies, institutions and public goods * Agricultural heritage and conservation Irrigation in the Middle East & North Africa The importance of irrigation in the region * Agricultural water withdrawals * Types of irrigation in the region Drivers of scarcity and the challenge of water for agriculture Chapter 2: Climate change and its expected impacts on the farming systems of the region Climate change events anticipated in the Middle East & North Africa Expected impacts of climate change on agricultural water and farming Water resources * Irrigation * Crop and livestock yields and production * Impacts by farming system Readiness for climate change Strategic preparedness Research on issues of agriculture and climate change The region's contribution to climate change Chapter 3: Water and conflict in the Middle East and North Africa A deadly water conflict The nature and role of conflict in the water sector of the region Why does conflict so often arise over water? The nature of the resource * Social and institutional specifics of water * Political economy and power relations over water Types of water conflict in the region A classification of transboundary conflict * A classification of conflict at the national or sectoral level * A classification of conflict at the local level The challenge of transboundary water A fertile field for conflict in the region * Scant cooperation to date * Pointers for the future Conflict at the national or inter-sectoral level Conflicts over access to water and water-related services * Conflict of water-related policy with other interests * Conflict with environmental needs or resource sustainability Conflict at the local level Conflicts arising from local adoption of new technology * Conflict provoked by state intervention at the local level Growing pressures to water conflict in the region Changes in patterns of demand * Changes on the supply side * The changing institutional context and power relations Water and conflict in the Syrian crisis Water and the causes of the Syrian crisis * The role of drought in the Syria crisis * How could this happen in a country that has so developed its water resources for agriculture? * Conclus
Christopher Ward is Honorary Research Fellow at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter. He was educated at Whitgift, and at St John's College, Oxford and St Antony's College Oxford. Formerly with the World Bank, working largely in the field of natural resource management and rural development in the Middle East and Africa, he is currently consultant to a number of international organizations, including the World Bank and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. He has lived in Yemen, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Somalia, as well as Kenya, Madagascar and the USA. He is the author of The Water Crisis in Yemen: Managing Extreme Water Scarcity in the Middle East (I.B.Tauris, 2015). Sandra Ruckstuhl is a social development specialist who works with the World Bank, United Nations and US Government to improve conflict sensitivity of international development and humanitarian aid initiatives in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. She has specialized field experience supporting water and natural resource management projects, and has conducted analysis and provided operational guidance for programmes in more than 20 countries. She holds a PhD in Conflict Analysis and Resolution. She currently serves as Senior Social Specialist, Global Water Practice, World Bank, supporting programs in fragile, conflict-affected and transboundary contexts, and as Program Manager for the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network's USA Sustainable Cities Initiative.
Reviews for Water Scarcity, Climate Change and Conflict in the Middle East: Securing Livelihoods, Building Peace
`Nowhere does water play a greater role in the social, economic and political dynamics of nations than in the water-scarce Middle East and North Africa region, whose stability and prosperity matter greatly for global stability, evidenced by recent and current events ... If you want to increase your general knowledge of the region and the challenges it faces, or to understand specifically how water impacts its vulnerable societies today, or to assess the risks to other societies that may face similar impacts in our rapidly changing world, and to examine potential solutions - read this unique book.' - Professor David Grey, University of Oxford and University of Exeter, `Water scarcity is scary. Global experience shows that water scarcity can be mitigated. This book exposes the extreme version of water scarcity faced by the people and economies of the Middle East and North Africa. It also provides an authoritative account of the diverse technical and institutional measures that have enabled versions of sustainable water security to be enjoyed in most of the economies of the region.'- Professor Tony Allan, King's College London and SOAS, University of London, `The authors weave three inextricably intertwined stories together to craft a comprehensive and nuanced portrait of the situation ... Their combined years of practical experience are on display both in the breadth of the material that they cover, and also in the telling case studies that bring their examples to life. Starting with challenges , then shifting to options , and finally to an agenda for change , the authors leave the readers with a sense of hope for this fragile region, and offer governments and development partners a detailed path forward.' - Professor Aaron Wolf, Oregon State University