Water for the millions: Focus Saudi Arabia

Chandrasekharam, Dornadula (2018) Water for the millions: Focus Saudi Arabia. Water-Energy Nexus, 1 (2). pp. 142-144. ISSN 25889125

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Abstract

Food security is essential for any country. Due to the lack of water resources, countries rely on food imports to satisfy the needs of millions. Oil rich countries, like Saudi Arabia, imports agricultural products for the same reason. This is a short-term solution to circumvent the issue of water scarcity and in future such policy will push the country to desperation. Saudi Arabia withdraws 20 billion m3 of groundwater per year, while the annual recharge of groundwater is only 2.4 billion m3. This additional quantity of groundwater is extracted from non-renewable (fossil) groundwater from trans-boundary Saq-Ram sandstone aquifer of Mesozoic age, with a proven reserve of 103,360 MCM. An amount of about 394 MCM/y flows out of the country. The current 17,300 km2 of irrigated area will shrink in future due to water shortage, thus reducing the GDP contribution below 3%. The best option is to harness geothermal energy to operate the desalination plants. Saudi Arabia can generate desalinated water at the rate of 0.03 US$/m3 (without subsidy). Saudi Arabia cannot afford to overlook this option.

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IITH Creators:
IITH CreatorsORCiD
Chandrasekharam, DornadulaUNSPECIFIED
Item Type: Article
Subjects: Civil Engineering
Divisions: Department of Civil Engineering
Depositing User: Library Staff
Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2019 11:07
Last Modified: 13 Nov 2019 11:07
URI: http://raiith.iith.ac.in/id/eprint/6776
Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.wen.2019.01.001
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