The Health Impacts of Drinking Contaminated Water

Drinking dirty or contaminated water causes numerous health problems, all of which one should be aware of. The contamination of water sources can start from the main water sources such as city water supplies, rivers, streams, and lakes, or well water supplies. Moreover, the main water source such as groundwater might get contaminated from toxic chemicals found underground, such as fluoride or arsenic, if the water is not filtered properly. Furthermore, contamination can occur from something as dangerous as a badly designed hazardous waste site or industrial site, exposing the water to numerous dangerous chemicals. As previously mentioned, contaminated water … Continue reading

CSP-Powered Desalination: Prospects in MENA

Conventional large-scale desalination is cost-prohibitive and energy-intensive, and not viable for poor countries in the MENA region due to increasing costs of fossil fuels. In addition, the environmental impacts of desalination are considered critical on account of GHG emissions from energy consumption and discharge of brine into the sea. The negative effects of desalination can be minimized, to some extent, by using renewable energy to power the plants. What is Concentrated Solar Power The core element of Concentrated Solar Power Plant is a field of large mirrors reflecting captured rays of sun to a small receiver element, thus concentrating the … Continue reading

دور المعرفة الأصيلة والابتكار في إدارة المياه

أنشأ أسلافنا أنظمة وتطبيقات مدهشة لإدارة المياه ساعدتهم على مكافحة المناخ القاسي والموارد الطبيعية الشحيحة في أجزاء كثيرة من هذا الكون. في هذا المقال، نستعرض كيف استخدمت الحضارات القديمة المعرفة الأصيلة في إدارة المياه، وكيف يمكن للابتكار والريادة أن يجنبوا منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال افريقيا أزمة المياه التي تعصف بها. الماضي الذهبي استطاعت الحضارات القوية البقاء والاستمرار في منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال افريقيا منذ القرن الرابع قبل الميلاد، على الرغم من الظروف الجافة والقاحلة، بسبب اعتمادها على التكنولوجيات المائية المحكمة والهندسة الهيدروليكية. في القرن الرابع عشر، أشارت مداولات عالم الاجتماع الكبير المولود في تونس ابن خلدون إلى أن السلالات المنِعة … Continue reading

شح المياه في منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال إفريقيا: محفز للمنَعة والابتكار

لقد كان الماء – وسيظل – عاملًا رئيسيًا في تشكيل الحياة على الأرض. فهو محرك رئيسي لنهوض الحضارات وتفككها وتهجيرها. أظهر التاريخ أن الماء يمكن أن يكون سببًا للسلام والصراع بين الأمم. ومن منظور عملي أكثر، تقع المياه في قلب برامج التنمية الاجتماعية والاقتصادية والبيئية. تعد منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال إفريقيا المنطقة الأكثر ندرة في المياه في العالم، وهو وضع يتفاقم بسبب تغير المناخ وعدم الاستقرار السياسي. في حين أن تأثيرات هذا التحدي المائي المتضخم أضحت أكثر وضوحًا، فمن المتوقع أن تتسارع شدة ووتيرة التأثيرات غير المباشرة وغير المقاسة على الأمن والاستقرار في المنطقة في السنوات القادمة. تتميز معظم الموارد … Continue reading

Water Woes in Palestine

Water crisis in the West Bank and Gaza is largely overshadowed by the overall political tension between Palestine and Israel. However, the ever-growing water conflict between the two sides is a major impediment to reaching a just and peaceful resolution to the Palestine-Israel conflict, and an essential component for the creation of an independent Palestinian state. Ever since the Nakbah (Day of Catastrophe) in 1948, Israel has sought to control the main sources of water, and after the 1967 conflict Israel has managed to control all of the major water sources it shares with Palestine and other neighboring countries such … Continue reading

Seawater Desalination – A Better Choice for MENA

Water scarcity is a major problem in many parts of the world affecting quality of life, the environment, industry, and the economies of developing nations. The MENA region is considered as one of the most water-scarce regions of the world. Large scale water management problems are already apparent in the region. While the MENA region’s population is growing steadily, per capita water availability is expected to fall by more than 40-50% by the year 2050. Also, climate change is likely to affect weather and precipitation patterns, and the consequences of which may force the MENA region to more frequent and … Continue reading

Water-Energy Nexus in the Arab Countries

Amongst the most important inter-dependencies in the Arab countries is the water-energy nexus, where all the socio-economic development sectors rely on the sustainable provision of these two resources. In addition to their central and strategic importance to the region, these two resources are strongly interrelated and becoming increasingly inextricably linked as the water scarcity in the region increases. In the water value chain, energy is required in all segments; energy is used in almost every stage of the water cycle: extracting groundwater, feeding desalination plants with its raw sea/brackish waters and producing freshwater, pumping, conveying, and distributing freshwater, collecting wastewater … Continue reading

Role of Indigenous Knowledge & Innovation in Water Management

Our ancestors have created astounding water management systems and applications that helped them combat the harsh climate and scarce natural resources in many parts of this universe. Read on to know how ancient civilizations used indigenous knowledge in water management, and how innovation and entrepreneurship can ward off the water crisis facing the entire MENA region. The Golden Past Within MENA and since the 4th century BCE, the strongest civilizations made it through arid and semis arid conditions mainly due to their robust water technologies and hydraulic engineering. In the 14th century, the deliberations of the great Tunis-born social scientist … Continue reading

Water Scarcity in Jordan: An Overview

Being one of the most arid countries in the Middle East, Jordan is facing severe water shortages. The current per capita water supply in the country is 200 cubic meters per year which is almost one-third of the global average. To make matters worse, it is projected that Jordan’s population (currently at 6 million) will reach 9 million by 2025 causing a drastic decline in per capita water availability to measly 91 cubic meters. Read on to know more about water scarcity in Jordan: State of the Affairs Groundwater resources account for 54% of Jordan’s total water supply, and are … Continue reading

Water Shortages in MENA: A Trigger for Resilience & Innovation

Water has been – and will continue to be – a key shaper of life on earth. It is a major driver for the rise, dismantle, and displacement of civilizations. History has shown that water could be a cause of peace and conflict among nations.  From a more practical perspective, water is at the heart of socioeconomic and environmental development agendas. The MENA region is the most water-scarce region in the world, a situation being magnified by climate change and political instability. While the impacts of such amplified water challenge are becoming more visible, the indirect and unmeasured impacts on … Continue reading

The Rapid Degradation of Wadi Gaza

In recent years, environmental crisis has worsened in the Palestine, Gaza Strip in particular, with solid waste, sewage and air pollution being the major issues. The key reason for environmental degradation in the Gaza Strip has been the difficult economic situation and an unending Israeli blockade. Wadi Gaza (or the Gaza Valley) which is located in the middle of Gaza Strip has been transformed from being the most substantial natural ecosystems in Palestine to the most deteriorated regions. Wadi Gaza can be described as one of the largest natural wetlands in Palestine with a length of 105 km. This area has … Continue reading

أهمية المحافظة على المياه المنزلية

تعاني منطقة الشرق الاوسط من ندرة المياه وسوء الإدارة للموارد المائية. وعلى الرغم من الإستثمارات الضخمة في قطاع المياه، لا تزال قضية إدارة المياه شكل خطوره من الناحية الإقتصادية والبيئية في جميع أنحاء هذه المنطقة. الإستهلاك المفرط للمياه هي قضية خطيرة ويعتبر معدل استخدام نصيب الفرد من المياه في معظم بلدان الشرق الأوسط أعلى كثيرا من المعدل العالمي. فعلى سبيل المثال، متوسط استهلاك المقيمين في كل من الإمارات العربية المتحدة والسعودية حوالي 250 لترا و550 لترا من المياه يوميا على التوالي. بينما معدل استخدام الفرد للمياه في المملكة المتحدة وألمانيا حوالي 127 لترا و150 لترا من المياه يوميا على التوالي. … Continue reading