The new State of the Nile Basin Report 2020 released on Monday said localised high pollution is experienced mainly around urban centres.
quality of the Nile waters has generally deteriorated because of population growth
and urbanisation, agricultural intensification, and industrial development.
new State of the Nile Basin Report 2020 released on Monday said localised high
pollution is experienced mainly around urban centres.
report compiled by the Nile Basin Initiative Secretariat based in Entebbe said there
is considerable risk that fresh water downstream of major urban areas may become
polluted and de facto unusable.
Launching the report, Rwanda’s Environment Minister,
Jeanne d'Arc Mujawamariya said countries in the Nile Basin need to periodically
reflect and monitor some of the developments responsible for increasing pollution
of the Nile.
She said rising water abstractions from the river,
rapid land use change and heavy pollution have exerted increasing pressure on
the Nile water resources and the ecosystems that support their continuous
provision of clean water.
Other studies have shown that Nile pollutants are
derived from sources such as industrial wastewater, oil pollution, municipal wastewater,
agricultural drainage, and natural cyanotoxins. also known as (also known as blue-green algae)
of cyanobacteria, elicited by excess nutrients leads to the production of cyanotoxins, which affect the
health of fish and may poison them.
In Uganda, it is common to find trucks,
cars, motorcycles parked in river streams for washing and yet those are known
for spillage of oils into the water. Bush burning along the river coupled with
cultivation within the river banks increasing on pollution levels.
the report, Nile Basin Initiative’s Senior Water Resources Management Specialist,
Dr. Dr. Michael Kizza said the report
tries to present a case for countries to work together to innovate solutions to
the water security challenges.
//////Cue In “ For me what I find…….
Cue Out……challenging issues”/////
The 6,600-kilometre Nile stretches
across 11 countries—Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea,
Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.
importance, the Nile is still heavily polluted by waste and rubbish poured
directly in to it, as well as agricultural runoff
industrial waste, with consequences for biodiversity, especially fishing, and
projects projected imbalance between available water and growing water demand
is likely to be substantial.
water savings are possible if losses in existing irrigation schemes can be
reduced. This includes potential reduction of losses, where the estimated
direct evaporation losses are estimated from 100 to 250 mm per year.”
It calls on countries
to explore rain waters harvesting as one of the options related to water abstraction.
represents a very substantial water resource that is currently underused.
the productivity of rainwater is low in rain-fed farming across the Nile Basin
– which covers 87% of arable land. It suggests large untapped water resources
and agricultural potential” spreads part of the report Implications
of Agricultural development for water and food security
of the report said It is clear that water scarcity will constrain a large
expansion of areas under full irrigation supplied by surface water from the
Nile or its tributaries.
observed that a very large share of the additional food produce required,
therefore, needs to come from the use and improvements – regarding yield, total
production, and water productivity – in irrigated systems and large available
arable lands in the Basin and more importantly, from improvements in the large
global level, water shortages are
now affecting more than 3 billion people. FAO data has shown
that the amount of fresh
water available for each person has plunged by a fifth over two decades.
It is estimated that about 1.5 billion people
are suffering severe water scarcity or even drought, as a combination of
climate breakdown, rising demand and poor management has made agriculture
increasingly difficult across swathes of the globe.
agriculture represents 60% of global crop production, and 80% of land under
cultivation, with the rest benefiting from irrigation.