Water pouring from a faucet into a clear glass cup- CC via Flickr/PROUSEPA Environmental
CAIRO - 30 September 2018: Egypt’s Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation launched on Saturday the promo video for the first Cairo Water Week (CWW) due to convene on October 14-18.
The promo video shows the main issues that will be tackled during the conference, most notably the overwhelming influence of climate change, which resulted in water scarcity.
The four-day conference will focus on the following themes: climate change and environment; trans-boundary water governance and benefits; water scarcity, health, sanitation challenges and opportunities; and science and technology innovation.
The CWW is held under the auspices of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi in cooperation with the European Union and the United Nations’ Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) to tackle water issues, amid climate change that impacts the world’s freshwater.
In March 2016, the United Nations Environment Program warned that 50 percent of the world’s population will face “severe water stress” by 2030.
The conference will be attended by water experts from 52 countries and water ministers from Islamic states, Minister Mohamed Abdel Atti said in a previous statement.
Egypt suffers from an annual 21 billion cubic meters gap between water consumption and production. The consumption reached 110 billion cubic meters, while Egypt currently has 60 million cubic meters annually, Abdel Atti said.
Egypt has entered into a diplomatic and political battle with some Nile basin countries over its share of the Nile water. The disagreement started in 2010, when five Nile basin countries (Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda) signed the Entebbe Agreement, per which the two 1929 and 1959 deals conducted during British colonization can be relinquished.
The two deals had allocated 80 billion cubic meters of Nile water to Egypt (55.5 billion), and Sudan (18.5 billion); they also granted Egypt the right to veto against projects that can be established in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Sudan that may cause harm to its share.
Moreover, Egypt’s concern over its share was escalated after Ethiopia started building the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile. The tributary feeds 80 percent of the Nile’s water to downstream states.