Nasser Saidi on the looming MENA water shortage crisis
Dr Nasser Saidi, Executive Director at the Hawkamah Institute for Corporate Governance and former Chief Economist at the Dubai International Finance Centre, penned a compelling op-ed in The National earlier this week on the water shortage crisis in the MENA region. You can read the full article here. In brief:
- Water shortage is a global problem, but it is particularly acute in the MENA region, which contains 6.3% of the world’s population but only 1.4% of the world’s renewable fresh water.
- What’s worse is that the region is already using 75% of its available renewable water supplies due to rapidly increasing population, urbanisation and economic growth.
- Another issue is that the desalination that does take place is costly, energy intensive and leads to environmental degradation because its mostly powered by fossil fuels.
- The key is to wed renewable energy and desalination – in the MENA region, solar power looks like a promising solution.