Water supply and sanitation coverage in Africa
The water supply situation in Africa is already precarious, and climate change is expected to exacerbate the problem. This graphic shows the amount of water supply coverage at the national level for Africa, and the amount of sanitation coverage, as a percentage, at the national level for Africa. Statistics are shown for rural areas, for urban areas, and for all areas.
17 May 2005 - by Delphine Digout, based on a sketch by Philippe Rekacewicz; UNEP/GRID-Arendal
Freshwater use by sector at the beginning of the 2000s
The agricultural sector is by far the biggest user of freshwater. Analysis indicates that:
- In the United States, agriculture accounts for some 49% of total freshwater use, with 80% of this volume being used for irrigation (Shiklomanov, 1999).
- In Africa and Asia, an estimated 85-90% of all freshwater used is for agriculture (Shiklomanov, 1999).
- According to estimates for the year 2000, agriculture accounted for 67% of the world’s total fr...
26 Jan 2009 - by Philippe Rekacewicz (Le Monde diplomatique)
Water supply per river basin in 1995 and 2025
Although the absolute quantities of freshwater on earth have always remained approximately the same, the uneven distribution of water and human settlement continues to create growing problems freshwater availability and accessibility.
26 Jan 2009 - by Philippe Rekacewicz,February 2006
The coming water scarcity in Africa
In a few years from now, almost all sub-Saharan countries will be below the level at which water supply is enough for all. Even worse, most of them will be in a state of water-stress or scarcity.
26 Jan 2009 - by Philippe Rekacewicz (Le Monde diplomatique), February 2006
Freshwater resources: volume by continent
Glaciers and ice caps cover about 10% of the world’s landmass. These are concentrated in Greenland and Antarctica and contain 70% of the world’s freshwater. Unfortunately, most of these resources are located far from human habitation and are not readily accessible for human use. According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), 96% of the world’s frozen freshwater is at the South and North Poles, with the remaining 4% spread over 550,000 k...
01 Oct 2009 - by Philippe Rekacewicz (Le Monde diplomatique)
When the city harms its own water resources
In areas where surface water is not readily available (located far from areas of need), groundwater is the primary water source. Groundwater aquifers supply an estimated 20% of the global population living in arid and semi-arid regions. Despite their widespread presence, groundwater aquifers in arid areas receive only limited or seasonal recharge, making such aquifers susceptible to rapid depletion. The Northern Sahara Basin Aquifer, for example,...
01 Oct 2009 - by Philippe Rekacewicz
A qanat is a water management system used to secure reliable water supply to human settlements or irrigation in semi-arid and arid regions. Probably originating in Persia, the qanat system has been adopted and developed further in large parts of Asia and Europe. Its widespread use is refected in the many names for the system and similar systems; kariz/kahan (Persian), khettara (Morocco), galeria (Spain), falaj (United Arab Emirates and Oman), ...
06 Dec 2010 - by Riccardo Pravettoni
Water supply and demand in Nairobi
The bulk of water supply for Nairobi comes from Thika, Sasumua and Ruiru Dams, as well as the Kikuyu Springs. Over time water supply for the city has failed to meet demand. The current estimated water demand for Nairobi is 650 000 m3/day compared to the production of 482 940 m3/day (WRMA
2010). The difference between production and demand has been widening over time due to population growth, inadequacy of the carrying capacity of the distributio...
18 Mar 2011 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal