El-Fadel, M., El-Sayegh, Y., El-Fadl, K. and Khorbotly, D.
The Nile river basin: a case study in surface water conflict resolution
Journal of Natural Resources & Life Sciences Education, 32, .
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The Nile, shared by 10 river basin countries, is the main vital
water artery in the North Eastern region of Africa. The river has
two main tributaries: the White Nile originating in Burundi,
and the Blue Nile rising in Ethiopia. These are joined by the Atbara
River north of Khartoum, Sudan. To date, the prevailing
water policy regulating the distribution of water among the
countries of the Nile basin is a bilateral 1959 agreement attributing
the largest share of the river’s flow to Egypt, the downstream,
noncontributing country, with the rest allocated to
Sudan, leaving other countries in the Nile watershed without specific
shares. The high rate of population growth in the region propels
governments to continuously seek food, and thus water security,
to match increasing demand. Agricultural development
in other basin countries could be enhanced with a more adequate
distribution of water resources. Measures have been proposed to
alleviate potential water shortages, including improved utilization
of water in Egypt, and construction of numerous dams and
canals. There are, however, disagreements with particular countries
rejecting or accepting these plans depending on which country
will benefit most. The objective of this paper is to present a
decision case study to be taken by an international committee that
should set strategies for the resolution of the water conflict
through the harmonious exploitation of the Nile. The case study
targets a course of education at the graduate or senior undergraduate
level based on water resources issues impacting stability
in the region.
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