KSA water consumption rate twice the world average

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Updated 06 March 2014
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KSA water consumption rate twice the world average

A professor at King Saud University (KSU) says that water consumption in Saudi Arabia is higher than in countries blessed with rechargeable aquifers and replenishable resources.
Mirza Barjees Baig, a Canadian professor at KSU’s department of agricultural extension and rural society, told Arab News that the average water consumption in the Kingdom is double the world average.
“Demand for water by households is growing at the rate 7.5 percent annually. This increasing demand seems roughly three times the population growth rate in the Kingdom,” Baig said, adding that the situation is alarming.
According to him, water consumption (by households) exceeds eight million cubic meters per day, and it is an unprecedented record ever for Saudi Arabia. On average, the daily per capita consumption of water in the Kingdom is about 265 liters, he noted.
He said it is unfortunate that all the old conservation practices of the past and ways of using water wisely have disappeared worsening the situation, despite the fact that the arid conditions have stayed the same, and the groundwater reservoirs and resources are shrinking by the hour.
The scientist said that the general public and society must know that desalination is a very expensive way of obtaining water, and in the long run would become unsustainable.
The production of desalinated water uses up to eight times more energy than using groundwater and accounts for up to 20 percent of the energy consumption in Saudi Arabia, Baig explained. In addition, there are great environmental challenges associated with the whole process.
He said: “Water is vital to life and Saudi Arabia attaches great importance to its water resources. Even then, it faces severe arid conditions, scanty rainfalls and continuous influx of overseas workers and rising population per annum.
“The Kingdom receives very little rain, has no permanent rivers or lakes and has limited groundwater reservoirs, which are depleting at an alarming rate. In such a situation, it seems imperative to come up with the best water conservation measures and methods.”
In the past, he said, people in the Arabian Peninsula were well aware of the value of water which they highlighted in their rhymes and poems. They advised the younger generation not to waste water. They domesticated the camel, the most rational water consumer in the world, and cultivated the palm tree, which survives on very little water of any quality.


New Sudanese PM seeks cooperation with Saudi Arabia

Sudan's prime minister Abdalla Hamdok. (Reuters)
Updated 31 min 46 sec ago

New Sudanese PM seeks cooperation with Saudi Arabia

  • Dr. Abdullah Hamdouk thanked Saudi Arabia for its recent generous support for flood-stricken areas and people in Sudan

JEDDAH: Sudan’s newly appointed Prime Minister Dr. Abdullah Hamdouk vowed to establish cooperative relations with Saudi Arabia in various fields, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
He lauded the reforms being implemented by the Saudi government. Hamdouk also praised the decades-long Saudi support and relief for the people of Sudan.
He said his government seeks a new era of cooperation and investment to achieve the mutual interests of both countries, and promised to pay an official visit to the Kingdom as soon as possible.
Hamdouk called for joint initiatives to achieve regional peace and security, especially around the Red Sea. He thanked the Kingdom for its recent generous support for flood-stricken areas and people in Sudan.