Sunday, July 18, 2010

Water ‘essential’ to UAE security

Tamsin Carlisle in the National (Abu Dhabi): An adequate supply of clean, fresh water is vital to the security of the UAE and the entire MENA [Middle East-North Africa] region, according to the director of the Abu Dhabi-based Arab Water Academy. “Water security means also food security, energy, climate change. It is tightly linked to crucial security issues,” says Dr Asma el Kasmi, the first director of the two-year-old academy. “This region will be the most strongly hit by the effects of climate change on water. If we do nothing, it’s not only the problems of the water manager, it will really affect overall security.”

Yet the UAE, which is one of the world’s most arid countries, holds the dubious distinction of being among the biggest per capita water users and the leading per capita consumer of bottled water. Both statistics are troubling to Dr el Kasmi, a Moroccan scientist who earned PhDs from French and US universities and was a chemistry professor before applying her intellect to solving regional water problems…

Satellite view of the United Arab Emirates

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