Third World Centre for Water Management

Journals

Volume 21, Issue 2

Special Thematic Issue: Selected Global Water Issues

ONLINE ACCESS TO THIS ISSUE

EDITORIAL


AN ASSESSMENT OF FUTURE GLOBAL WATER ISSUES  (pp. 225-227)

Asit K. Biswas, Third World Centre for Water Management, Atizapán, Mexico

E-mail: akbiswas@cablevision.net.mx

Abstract: After decades of neglect, water has recently become a part of the international political agenda. However, the focus of the debate on the global water crisis is still wrong. The main crisis is unlikely to come from water scarcity, though some countries will find it difficult to manage such problems. Instead, it is likely to come from continuing and rapid water quality deterioration, and the availability of investment funds. Neither of these two issues is being adequately reflected in global water debates. In addition, the targets of the water-related Millennium Development Goals are unlikely to be achieved universally by 2015, until and unless consumers pay for the water services they receive. The subsidies should be very specifically targeted to the poor.


FINANCING THE MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS FOR WATER AND SANITATION: WHAT WILL IT TAKE? (pp. 239-252)

Meera Mehta, Thomas Fugelsnes and Kameel Virjee, Water and Sanitation Program-Africa

Contact: Thomas Fugelsnes, e-mail: tfugelsnes@worldbank.org

Abstract: The key financing challenge in meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGS) is to arrive at consensus-based, viable and sustainable country-level financing strategies that are integrated into the overall national planning and expenditure process. This requires an assessment of various policy scenarios taking into account economic capacity (as defined by GDP) as well as (plausible) level of public expenditures and affordability at a household level. This paper is prepared to guide the discussions on the characteristics of financing requirements, affordability and feasibility of the MDGs on water and sanitation in Africa. It argues that for African countries to meet the targets, they will need to implement cost recovery policies (leverage more resources into the sector) and use public resources better so as to increase sector performance and help the poor gain access to water and sanitation.


WATER AS A HUMAN RIGHT: THE UNDERSTANDING OF WATER IN THE ARAB COUNTRIES OF THE MIDDLE EAST (pp. 253-271)

Simone Klawittera and  Hadeel Qazzazb

aPolicy Advisor on behalf of Heinrich-Boell-Foundation, Berlin, Germany; bHeinrich-Boell-Foundation, Arab Middle East Office, Ramallah, Palestine, Israel

Contact: Simone Klawitter, e-mail: mail@klawitter-berlin.com

Abstract: The international community has affirmed the human right to water in a number of international treaties, declarations and other documents. Most notably, the United Nations (UN) Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights adopted in November 2002 a General Comment on the Right to Water setting out international standards and obligations relating to the right to water. Based on the UN concept of water as a human right for selected Arab countries in the Middle East (Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon), the paper analyses if and to what extent these concepts are acknowledged. It aims to identify the scale of knowledge of and commitment to the UN concept in the region, and the main areas of concern in each country regarding water as a human right. The paper summarizes the main challenges facing strategic and coordinated action towards the UN concept of water as a human right, identifies what types of processes and institutions need to be developed to meet the challenges of the concept, and provides best practice examples from countries that have shown innovation. Objectives and priority ideas for activities of non-governmental organizations are recommended.


THE UNITED NATIONS CONCEPT OF WATER AS A HUMAN RIGHT: A NEW PARADIGM FOR OLD PROBLEMS? (pp. 273-282)

Malcolm Langford, Right to Water Programme, Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE), Geneva, Switzerland

E-mail: malcolm_langford@yahoo.com.au

Abstract: Water history reveals millennia-old struggles over the ownership of water, the pollution and depletion of water sources, and conflicting water uses. What is new is the scale of these problems, particularly access to water for the poorest of the poor. This paper discusses the various conceptual responses to the water problématique, including the commodity, public and social approaches. The human rights aspects of the latter are analysed in some detail in light of the recent General Comment on the Right to Water by a United Nations body. The paper argues that countries have international legal obligations, to respect, protect and fulfil this right without discrimination, that carry clear implications for policy and practice. While the report does not argue that this human tight requires the complete decommodification of water or that it provides a ‘magic bullet’ solution, it seeks to show the benefits of a human rights approach and provides some suggestions for implementing the right at the local, national and international levels.


WATER ALLOCATION AMONG MULTIPLE STAKEHOLDERS: CONFLICT ANALYSIS OF THE WAIAHOLE WATER PROJECT, HAWAII (pp. 283-295)

Chennat Gopalakrishnana, Jason Levyb, Kevin W. Lland Keith W. Hipeld

aDepartment of Natural Resources and Environmental Management, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI, USA; bDepartment of Information and Computer Science, University of Hawaii-Leeward, Pearl City, HI, USA; cOdette School of Business, University of Windsor, Ontario, Canada; dDepartment of Systems Design Engineering, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

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

Abstract: Recent years have seen a sharp increase in the demand for water in Hawaii, which has intensified and accelerated the competition for the state’s water resources. Specifically, this paper uses the decision support system GMCR II to analyse the strategic aspects of a multi-party water dispute involving the allocation of Waiahole Ditch waters on Oahu, the major economic and population centre of Hawaii. The issue of surplus water allocation is unprecedented in Hawaii and thus there is no explicit water law precedent governing allocation of such water as conceived by the water administrative agencies or the judicial branch.


PRIORITIZING LONG-TERM WATERSHED MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES USING GROUP DECISION ANALYSIS (pp. 297-309)

M. Reza Ghanbarpoura, Keith W. Hipelb and Karim C. Abbaspourc

aFaculty of Natural Resources, University of Mazandaran, Sari, Iran; bDepartment of Systems Design Engineering, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada; cSwiss Federal Institute for Environmental Science and Technology (EAWAG), Duebendorf, Switzerland

Contact: Keith W. Hipel, e-mail: kwhipel@uwaterloo.ca

Abstract: There is a growing consensus that an effective way of enhancing long-term water resources management and environmental sustainability is through locally based planning at the watershed scale. Managing watershed resources for particular uses requires interactive dialogue among all stakeholders who have different objectives. Therefore, the resolution of inter-group conflict should be an acknowledged task of the planning process. In this paper, an integrated framework for prioritizing watershed management strategies is proposed. A case study is employed to highlight the challenges of using group decision analysis in strategic planning and to illustrate the interaction between different stakeholders on watershed issues. In particular, two group decision-making approaches are used to assess and analyse different stakeholders’ preferences for various strategies and alternatives. Professional experts, government agencies and community leaders constitute the different parties included in the framework. The main focus is on the application of group decision analysis in the long-term watershed planning process. The results of the overall preference analysis show that water resources development is the most important strategy followed by agricultural and range management.


PRIORITIES FOR FRESH WATER USE PURPOSES IN SELECTED COUNTRIES WITH POLICY IMPLICATIONS (pp. 311-323)

Tapio S. Katko and Riikka P. Rajala, Tampere University of Technology, Finland

Contact: Tapio S. Katko, e-mail: tapio.katko@tut.fi

Abstract: Priorities in water use purposes were studied by a two-phase questionnaire in 11 countries/regions on five continents with different water resources and use, socio-economic and cultural conditions. The first phase involved three regions: East Africa (1988), the Baltic region (1994) and Finland (1993, 2001). In the second phase (2001-02), water use purposes were to be viewed ‘as they are’ and ‘as they should be’. On average, community water supply was ranked first, nature conservation second and hydropower third. Priorities varied less than originally anticipated. Priorities should also be remembered in integrated water resources management.


AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY RESPONSES TO UPGRADED FARM DAM LAWS AND COST-EFFECTIVE SPILLWAY MODELLING (pp. 325-340)

John D. Pisaniello and Jennifer Mckay, Centre for Comparative Water Policies and Laws, School of Commerce, Division of Business, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia

Contact: John D. Pasaniello, e-mail: john.pisaniello@unisa.edu.au

Abstract: Recent attention to farm dams and dam safety in Australia and elsewhere reflects both safety and sustainability issues, and is driven by the fact that since built, many dam safety aspects have changed, e.g. population distributions, meteorological information, estimates of rainfall and runoff, engineering methods, and design standards and techniques. Farmers in Australia have often overlooked the common law obligation to review/design dams in line with current standards because of high engineering consulting costs: this leaves them vulnerable to litigation if their dam fails and the downstream community is susceptible to unacceptable risk levels. The seriousness of this problem has been demonstrated by case studies undertaken in the policy-absent State of South Australia and the policy-driven State of Victoria. In each state, ten hazardous private reservoirs were investigated for spillway adequacy in line with state-of-the-art practice. The investigation follows the release of an innovative Australian developed cost-effective spillway design/review procedure that has been made available and promoted in both states to minimize cost burdens to dam owners and encourage better dam safety management. Recent surveys undertaken in South Eastern Australia to test community attitudes to the procedure and implemented dam safety and water allocation policy in Victoria are also reported. These surveys together with the ‘spillway adequacy’ investigations clearly demonstrate that farmers require more than awareness and encouragement to ensure they look after their dams properly.


CLIMATE CHANGE IMPACTS ON THE WATER SUPPLY OF THESSALONIKI (pp. 341-353)

E.A. Baltasand M.A. Mimikoub

aDepartment of Hydraulics, Soil Science and Agricultural Engineering, School of Agriculture, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece; bDepartment of Water Resources, Hydraulics and Maritime Engineering, School of Civil Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, Zografou, Greece

Contact: E.A. Baltas, e-mail: baltas@agro.auth.gr

Abstract: This paper examines the assessment of the impacts of climate change on water resources in the Aliakmon river basin, Northern Greece, and on some critical water management issues, such as reservoir storage and water supply of the city of Thessaloniki. A monthly conceptual water balance model was calibrated using historical hydrometeorological data. This model was applied to estimate runoffs in the entrance of the Polyfyto reservoir under two different equilibrium scenarios (UKHI, CCC) referring to 2050. Reduction of the mean annual runoff, mean winter runoff and summer runoff would occur. By using these scenarios, the sensitivity of the risk associated with the water supply for the city of Thessaloniki was evaluated under conditions of altered runoff. Increases of the tasks associated with the annual quantities of water supply were observed, particularly under the UKHI scenario.


FUNDAMENTALS DETERMINING PRICES AND ACTIVITIES IN THE MARKET FOR WATER ALLOCATIONS (pp. 355-369)

Henning Bjornlund and Peter Rossini, School of International Business, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia

Contact: Henning Bjornlund, e-mail: henning.bjornlund@unisa.edu.au

Abstract: This paper analyses prices paid and volumes traded the market for water allocations to provide insight into which factors drive activities in that market. While factors such as commodity prices, supply and demand as well as macroeconomic indicators have had an influence on price and volume traded, the main determinants during the study period have been the level of seasonal allocation, rainfall and evaporation. During this period of relative water scarcity, irrigators with water-dependent capital assets such as dairy and horticultural fanners have been willing to pay increasing water prices relative to commodity prices in order to protect these long-term investments and stay in business.


POST-PROJECT REVIEW ON A RESETTLEMENT PROGRAMME OF THE KOTAPANJANG DAM PROJECT IN INDONESIA (pp. 371-384)

Syafruddin Karimia, Mikiyasu Nakayamab, Ryo Fujikurac, Taro Katsuraid, Masako Iwatad, Takeshi Morid and Koichi Mizutanid

aCenter for Economic Research and Institutional Development, Andalas University, Padang, Indonesia; bGraduate School of Frontier Sciences, University of Tokyo, Japan; cFaculty of Humanity and Environment, Hosei University, Tokyo, Japan; dGraduate School of Environmental Management, Hosei University, Tokyo, Japan

Contact: Mikiyasu Nakayama, e-mail: nakayama@k.u-tokyo.ac.jp

Abstract: The Kotapanjang Dam project in the Sumatra lsland of lndonesia, has been criticized in that it created many problems for resettled families. Affected families filed a lawsuit in lndonesian and Japanese courts. The authors conducted a field survey in four resettlement villages to evaluate the resettlement scheme applied. The survey revealed that living conditions of two villages were significantly improved after resettlement. The condition of another village was fairly improved, although there was room for further improvements. In yet another village, while many people experienced a decrease in income and hardship after the resettlement, other indicators of quality of life suggested improvements.


WATER SECTOR OF BANGLADESH IN THE CONTEXT OF INTEGRATED WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT: A REVIEW (pp. 385-398)

Ashim Das Guptaa, Mukund Singh Babela, Xavier Alberta and Ole Markb

aWater Engineering and Management, Asian Institute of Technology, Klong Luang, Pathumthani, Thailand; bDHI-Institute for Water and Environment, Horsholm, Denmark

Contact: Ashim Das Gupta, e-mail: adg@ait.ac.th

Abstract: This paper presents the general concepts and elements of integrated water resources management and the status of their adoption in Bangladesh at the national level. It describes the situation of the country with respect to the duality in the seasonal pattern of rainfall, the geographic position and the topography, which are the main constraints to its socio-economic development. An assessment of the past management practices in water sector identifies hindrances in the implementation of integrated water resources management process. The paper concludes with recommendations for improved water management in the country.


BOOK REVIEW
Water as a Focus for Regional Development, edited by Asit K. Biswas, Olcay Unver and Cecilia Tortajada, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2004

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