Third World Centre for Water Management

Journals

Volume 18, Issue 4

ONLINE ACCESS TO THIS ISSUE


INTEGRATED WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT ALONG THE SENEGAL RIVER: INTRODUCING AN ANALYTICAL FRAMEWORK (pp. 501-521)

Olli Varis and Virpi Lahtela, Water Resources Laboratory, Helsinki University of Technology, Finland

E-mails: olli.varis@hut.fi, vlahtela@cc.hut.fi

Abstract: Integrated water resources management has become a trendy paradigm, although the issue is anything but new. In West Africa the past few decades have been rich with such attempts. Along the Senegal River their success has been very limited. The situation has instead polarized strongly across the dilemma of whether to prioritize a few macro-scale development goals or to develop the livelihood of the poor along the river. One of the crucial steps to move on is to develop a clear and transparent formulation of the problem. An approach that uses Bayesian networks is presented and applied in this study.


WATER PRICING FOR MULTI-SECTORAL ALLOCATION: A CASE STUDY (pp. 523-544)

R. Quba’Aa, M. El-Fadela and M.R. Darwishb

aFaculty of Engineering and Architecture, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon; bFaculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon

Contact: M. El-Fadel

Abstract: This paper presents a case study for the allocation pattern of available water resources within and among competing sectors that would achieve the highest economic return from water use. For this purpose, an optimization model using linear programming was developed. Considering constraints on greenhouse area, crop production and seasonal per capita water requirements along with the area-specific conditions and potential growth, the optimal water allocation pattern between the prevailing and future consuming sectors was determined. The results indicated that, at present, water resources are misallocated as well as under-priced; current municipal and agricultural water prices represent 61% and 69%, respectively, of the actual water cost. With the development of tourism in the area, the agricultural sector is expected to diminish as more profitable uses of water evolve.


PROPOSED WATER POLICY FOR SRI LANKA: THE POLICY VERSUS THE POLICY PROCESS (pp. 545-562)

Herath M. Gunatilakea and Chennat Gopalakrishnanb

aDepartment of Agricultural Economies, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka; bDepartment of Natural Resources and Environmental Management, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA

Contact: Chennat Gopalakrishnan, e-mail: chennat@hawaii.edu

Abstract: This paper discusses a recent experience of an unsuccessful attempt to adopt water policy for Sri Lanka. The donor-driven nature, top-down approach, lack of transparency, lack of historical and cultural perspectives, inadequate attention to environmental issues and inadequate safety nets have been cited as the major weaknesses of the proposed policy. This paper summarizes the major arguments against the policy document and analyses the reasonableness of the critiques. The paper also analyses two major aspects of the proposed policy -water pricing and tradable water rights- using a comprehensive policy analysis framework. The major lesson learnt is the significance of participatory approaches in formulating water policies.


GROUNDWATER SITUATION IN INDIA: PROBLEMS AND PERSPECTIVE (pp. 563-580)

Dhirendra Kumar Singh and Anil Kumar Singh, Water Technology Centre, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, India

E-mails: dksingh@iari.ernet.in, dks111@rediffmail.com

Abstract: Overexploitation of groundwater and intensive irrigation in major canal commands has posed serious problems for groundwater managers in India. Depletion of water tables, saltwater encroachment, drying of aquifers, groundwater pollution, water logging and salinity, etc. are major consequences of overexploitation and intensive irrigation. It has been reported that in many parts of the country the water table is declining at the rate of 1-2 m/year. At the same time in some canal commands, the water table rise is as high as 1 m/year. Deterioration in groundwater quality by various causes is another serious issue. Increased arsenic content in shallow aquifers of West Bengal reported recently has created panic among the groundwater users. Summed together, all these issues are expected to reduce the fresh water availability for irrigation, domestic and industrial uses. lf this trend continues unchecked, India is going to face a major water crisis in the near future. Realizing this, the government of India has initiated several protective and legislative measures to overcome the groundwater management-related problems but, due to the lack of awareness and political and administrative will, none of the measures has made any significant impact. This paper highlights the critical issues and examines the various schemes related to groundwater development and management.


GROUNDWATER RESOURCE USE PRACTICES AND IMPLICATIONS FOR SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE NORTH CHINA PLAIN: A CASE STUDY IN NINGJIN COUNTY OF SHANDONG PROVINCE, PR CHINA (pp. 581-593)

Lin Zhen and Jayant K. Routray, Rural Development, Gender and Resources Program, School of Environment, Resources and Development, Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand

Contact: Jayant K. Routray, e-mail: routray@ait.ac.th

Abstract: This paper addresses the critical situation of water resource exploitation for agriculture and environmental effects in Ningiin County in the North China Plain. Several negative environmental effects such as declining groundwater table levels, decline in groundwater quality, increased irrigation cost, increased soil salinity, compaction of soil, increased land subsidence and increased incidence of waterlogging have been experienced in the area, as perceived by the local farmers. This is due to overpumping of groundwater by a large number of wells clustered in small areas. The study indicates that if the current pattern of groundwater use, existing attitudes of farmers and improper implementation of policies and regulations is continued, the agricultural activities will face severe consequences and tend to be unsustainable. This warrants new strategies to improve the present situation.


CONSERVATION AND IMPROVEMENT OF THE NATURAL ENVIRONMENT IN RESERVOIR WATERSHEDS IN JAPAN (pp. 595-610)

Joji Harada, Water Resources Environment Technology Center, Tokyo, Japan

E-mail: harada@wec.or.jp

Abstract: This paper discusses environmental conservation in reservoir watersheds, an important aspect relating to dam construction. The discussion of the subject describes how, in response to today’s growing awareness of environmental issues, measures to absolutely minimize the effects on the environment of a dam project that will submerge the natural environment should be included in initial project plans, and how special concern for the environment ought to be shown throughout project implementation. Details are explained by introducing examples encountered in Japan.


INTER-STATE WATER DISPUTES IN INDIA: INSTITUTIONS AND POLICIES (pp. 611-625)

Alan Richardsa and Nirvikar Singhb

aDepartment of Environmental Studies, University of California, Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, USA; bDepartment of Economics, University of California, Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, USA

Contact: Nirvikar Singh, e-mail: boxjenk@cats.ucsc.edu

Abstract: In this paper the authors argue that Indian water dispute settlement mechanisms are ambiguous and opaque. The authors distinguish analytically between situations where co-operation is possible, and situations of pure conflict, where the initial allocation of rights is at stake. In the latter case, a search for a negotiated solution may be futile, and quick movement to arbitration or adjudication may be more efficient. However, in India, the process is slow, and effectively binding arbitration does not exist. The entanglement of inter-state water disputes with more general centre-state conflicts and political issues compounds problems. The authors argue that these impacts can be reduced by a more efficient design of mechanisms for negotiating inter-state water disputes: some of the possibilities include a national water commission independent of daily political pressures, a federated structure incorporating river basin authorities and water user associations and fixed time periods for negotiation and adjudication.

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