Egypt’s irrigation in 2021: et highlights achievements to reduce water deficit gap, adapt to climate change



Thu, 09 Dec 2021 - 02:27 GMT


Thu, 09 Dec 2021 - 02:27 GMT

Construction of concrete irrigation canal lining - CC via Wikimedia

Construction of concrete irrigation canal lining - CC via Wikimedia

CAIRO – 9 December 2021: The Egyptian Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation is implementing many major projects that aim to increase the capacity of the water system to deal with water challenges with a high degree of flexibility and efficiency.


The projects, Egypt has been implementing, also aim to achieve many goals such as rationalizing water use, maximizing the return from the water unit, modernizing and developing the water system, and adapting to changes climate, and achieving sustainable development for agricultural development projects.


Such development is expected to reflect positively on farmers in the first place, as part of the objectives of the National Water Resources Plan until 2037.


This comes in light of the challenges facing Egypt in the field of water, especially given the population rate increase, negative impact of climate change, and the unilateral measures taken by the Ethiopian side regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue.


Egypt’s renewable water resources are limited to 60 billion cubic meters annually, most of which come from the Nile River water, in addition to very limited amounts of rainwater and deep groundwater in the deserts. Egypt’s water needs amount to about 114 billion cubic meters annually, with a deficit of about 54 billion cubic meters annually, and that gap is filled by the state’s strategy to reuse water. Egypt also imports agricultural crops equivalent to about 34 billion cubic meters annually.


In the below lines, Egypt Today highlights the size of the achievements by the Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation during the year 2021, atop of them comes Egypt’s successful experience in the field of canal rehabilitation through the national project for the rehabilitation of canals that is currently being implemented.


As one of the most important tools for the comprehensive modernization of the water resources system, this project aims to rehabilitate canals with lengths of up to 20,000 km.


Dr. Mohamed Abdel-Aty, Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation, explained that all operations carried out on the ground are being followed up to ensure that the project is implemented at high rates of time and at the highest level of quality.


The Egyptian state also began implementing the national project for the transformation of modern irrigation systems and rehabilitation of watering cans, which aims to transfer the reins of 3.70 million acres of ancient lands from flood irrigation to modern irrigation systems within 3 years, as per the signed joint cooperation protocol between the ministries of irrigation, agriculture, finance and the National Bank of Egypt (NBE) and the Egyptian Agricultural Bank.


This project aims to achieve joint cooperation to implement an ambitious plan to achieve sustainable development for agricultural development projects.


The ministry’s agencies continue to respond decisively to all forms of encroachment across various governorates, in order to immediately remove them and to take all necessary legal measures in this regard. More than 22,000 cases of encroachment on the course of the Nile have been removed thusfar. Canals, drains, and irrigation properties, with an area of​​3.90 million square meters, are part of the ongoing campaigns of sweeping removals.


Several projects are being implemented to reuse agricultural wastewater, with the aim of treating the salinity of agricultural drainage water, such as the project to benefit from the water of the Bahr al-Baqar drain after treating it in the east of the delta.


Regarding the torrential rains, the ministry has established nearly 1,500 structures to protect against the dangers of these rains, and the state of alert has been raised in all relevant Ministry agencies to ensure the readiness of the bridge sectors to confront any emergency.


While for protecting the Egyptian shores from the negative effects of climate change, the Ministry has implemented a protection plan for beaches with lengths of up to 120 km.


There are many measures taken by the ministry in the field of rational groundwater management. The ministry has also used solar energy to operate wells within the framework of the measures taken to reduce emissions, in addition to using a system for operating and monitoring underground wells automatically remotely.


Integrating modern technology within the irrigation work system was also part of the ministry’s strategy, such as using satellite images in forecasting rain, monitoring violations in various governorates; in addition to using production of crop structure maps, and implementing an automated “telemetric” system to monitor water levels in canals and drains.



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