Turkey’s Looming Water Crisis

As reported by European WaterNews, the current Turkish administration has heeded a warning by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-Turkey) over Turkey’s shrinking water resources and a call on the government to take action before it faces a severe water crisis by 2050, by revealing an action plan to save water.  As the article notes:

“…Speaking to the media following yesterday’s Cabinet meeting, government spokesman Cemil Çiçek said Minister of Environment and Forestry Veysel EroÄŸlu had briefed the Cabinet on a five-year action plan spanning from 2008 to 2012.

“Seven provinces need urgent action because of decreasing drinking water resources and 34 provinces will face a water crisis starting in 2010. The remaining 40 provinces will have enough water until 2023,” he said. “Although Turkey has some of the most important rivers of the world, it ranks low when it comes to its water reserves,” stated the WWF’s report, posted by the organization’s Turkey office on its Web site. “Because Turkey has not adopted a sustainable water administration policy at international standards, it faces serious threats,” the report further stated.

The WWF says it is comforting to think of water as a renewable resource, but people must also know what limitless exploitation of a resource can lead to. People need 2.5 liters of water a day to drink, but considering other needs such as cooking, bathing and laundry, accepted water consumption per person is 150 liters a day. Turkey stands at 111 liters per person per day, while industrial countries see water consumption levels per person of 266 liters. This number is significantly lower in Africa, where it is 67 liters per person. The report also said that when Turkey’s population reaches 80 million by 2030, annual per person water consumption in Turkey would be 1,100 meters cubed, making it a country facing a severe water crisis.

Meanwhile, Environment Minister Veysel EroÄŸlu said employing modern irrigation techniques is one of the key ways to save water. “Agricultural production will face more problems and there will be more water problems both in urban and arid areas in Turkey. Almost 75 percent of water consumption goes to agriculture in the country, and 50 percent of irrigation water is wasted. We definitely need more controls and good water management,” he said yesterday, speaking with the Anatolia news agency….”

This entry was posted on Monday, June 30th, 2008 at 12:53 pm and is filed under Turkey.  You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.  Both comments and pings are currently closed. 

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